There are a variety of new tools and training opportunities for ACC faculty who teach online. Distance learning software like Adobe Connect, Blackboard, Google Hangouts, and WebEx have exponentially improved faculty’s ability to connect virtually. And to help faculty, a new Distance Learning Instruction Series has been created to provide information, examples and tips on teaching effective and engaging distance learning courses. The series is divided into four modules, each of which focuses on one major component of DL instruction. Faculty can access the series by going to the workshop database and registering. All four modules must be completed in order to receive credit for the series. Completion of the series fulfills the requirement for faculty training in distance learning instruction.
The newest long distance communications software licensed to ACC is WebEx. All ACC faculty and staff have access to Cisco WebEx and WebEx Connect conferencing tools for online sessions with colleagues or students? With WebEx, instructors or staff can use any device — PC, Mac, tablet, or smartphone – to set up audio or videoconferences in real time with anyone within ACC or around the world. Instructors can also conduct online review sessions and invite students to collaborate on question and answer segments. Files, applications, and even the computer mouse on the presenter’s computer can be shared with others, or a whiteboard can be created for note-taking. Sessions can be recorded for replay.
WebEx Connect combines WebEx functions with chat, instant messaging, and other tools for collaboration. For example, an instructor can chat with a colleague (via text, audio, or video) to prepare lesson plans and share documents, then with one click, launch a WebEx meeting to bring in other department members for further collaboration.
Free WebEx and WebEx Connect video tutorials and webinars are available online. Cisco tech support also is available 24/7 for those needing help creating or managing a WebEx session.