All UVA and McIntire courses are being taught online throughout the spring semester. More information can be found on McIntire's official COVID-19 page. Learn More

Remote Teaching Tools for Faculty and Staff

The University of Virginia continues to monitor the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Find UVA’s messages and other public health resources and guidance.

The following list includes tools and general advice for online teaching strategies.

LMS (Blackboard and Collab)

The primary interface for all online teaching will be your LMS. The links below contain instructions for the commonly used features of each LMS.

Blackboard

•    McIntire's Blackboard site: blackboard.comm.virginia.edu
•    Blackboard guides (Note: Most courses use Blackboard Learn, not Ultra):

Collab
Zoom

Zoom is the primary platform for any video or audio interactions for your course, whether synchronous or asynchronous. Most students should already have some familiarity with Zoom. Below are links to Zoom help pages:

Update 3/31/20 - With the massive increase in online zoom classes, there has been a nationwide increase in reports of unauthorized participants in virtual classrooms

How to handle disruptions during class (Host or Moderators can perform these functions in your virtual classroom)

  • Disable video: Turn off a student’s video to block distracting content or inappropriate gestures while class is in session.
  • Mute students: Mute/unmute individual students or all of them at once. Mute Upon Entry (in your settings) is also available to keep the clamor at bay when everyone files in.
  • Attendee on-hold: An alternative to removing a user, you can momentarily disable their audio/video connections. Click on the attendee’s video thumbnail and select Start Attendee On-Hold to activate.
  • How to remove a participant If someone who’s not meant to be there somehow manages to join your virtual classroom, you can easily remove them from the Participants menu. Hover over their name, and the Remove option (among other options) will appear. Click to remove them from your virtual classroom, and they won’t be allowed back in.
  • Lock your meeting If you’re sure that all of your expected participants have joined the meeting, you can lock the meeting so no one else can join. Open the Manage Participants window in the meeting and click More, then Lock Meeting. Note that this will prevent anyone from joining the meeting, including students or other people you’ve invited.

Additional, more restrictive precautions you can take before class: (Contact mavs@comm.virginia.edu for assistance if needed)

  • The Waiting Room feature is one way to protect your Zoom virtual classroom and keep out those who aren’t supposed to be there.  When enabled, you have two options for who hits the Waiting Room before entering a class:

    • All Participants will send everyone to the virtual waiting area, where you can admit them individually or all at once.
    • Guest Participants Only allows known students to skip the Waiting Room and join but sends anyone not signed in/part of your school into the virtual waiting area.
  • Password-protect the classroom: Create a password and share with your students via school email so only those intended to join can access a virtual classroom.  This can easily be done on your recurring meetings via the web interface at https://mcintire.zoom.us (Or contact mavs@comm.virginia.edu to set one for you).
  • Allow only authenticated users to join: Checking this box means only members of your school who are signed into their Zoom account can access this particular class.  This option forces login and removes the option to join from a browser, but if you find that your students are distributing the password, it is another layer of security that can be added. (Contact mavs@comm.virginia.edu to set this up if required).

 

Online Teaching Strategies

Below are some recommendations for moving common classroom interactions to an online format.

Instructor-Led Lectures
•    All sessions can be delivered synchronously or asynchronously.
•    Sessions can be recorded in Zoom and posted to the LMS.
•    Students can interact using Zoom through two-way voice and video sharing, content sharing, chat, and breakout rooms.
•    Zoom can be used to record from a classroom or your personal laptop.

Case Discussions
•    Zoom includes features like two-way voice and video sharing, content sharing, chat, and breakout rooms, which can be used to facilitate case discussions.
•    All sessions can be recorded in Zoom and posted to the LMS.
•    LMS discussion boards (Blackboard and Collab) can be used for asynchronous case discussions.  

Student Presentations
•    Zoom is an effective tool for student remote presentations.
•    All students have Zoom accounts and can schedule and invite participants to presentations.
•    Students can interact via polls, chat, or via two-way voice and video.
•    All sessions can be recorded in Zoom.

Assignments (Papers, Projects, etc.)
•    Assignments can be created in the LMS (Blackboard or Collab).
•    These assignments can be timed for release and can allow a set time for completion.
•    Instructors can create rubrics to aid with grading.

In-Class Breakouts
•    Zoom has an excellent breakout feature that allows an instructor to break a group into a set of smaller groups.
•    The instructor can join any group to check on the group’s progress.

Exams or Quizzes
•    Quizzes and final exams can be created in the LMS (Blackboard or Collab).
•    These assessments can be automatically graded (for multiple choice or T/F).
•    Assessments can be timed for release and can allow a set time for completion.
•    Instructors can create rubrics to aid with grading.

Outside-of-Class Group Work
•    Students can use Zoom to interact via polls, chat, or via two-way voice and video.
•    All sessions can be recorded to Zoom (some programs require submission of group sessions for a grade).
•    Discussion Boards can be used for illustrating outside-of-class group work. Discussion boards are available within Blackboard and Collab.

Guest Speakers
•    You can share your classroom Zoom link with any scheduled guest speaker.
•    Students can interact via polls, chat, or via two-way voice and video.
•    All sessions can be recorded to Zoom.

Materials Distribution (Readings, Videos, Web Links)
•    The LMS (Blackboard or Collab) should be used for all course-related materials posting.

Lab Software Access
•    Students can access the lab software remotely.  Instructions can be found at this link.

Notes on Class Participation
•    Students can participate directly in Zoom meetings (the chat feature is the easiest way to manage participation).
•    Discussion boards in the LMS are used as a participation metric in many courses.
•    Blog posts or writing submissions are used to measure participation in many courses.

Getting Help

For help with Zoom installation, hardware installation, student remote lab access, or general help

McIntire Help Desk: 434-924-7988 or helpdesk@comm.virginia.edu

For specific Instructional Design or LMS questions

McIntire Instructional Technology: instructional-technology@comm.virginia.edu

For Zoom or videoconferencing questions

McIntire Audio Visual Support: 434-924-4568 or mavs@comm.virginia.edu