As NRCA prepares to switch to remote education due to COVID-19 and the mandate to close normal school proceedings for the near future, we wanted to provide a quick reference on how students will access the Conference feature of Schoology.
1. What are Conferences?
“Conferences” is an application utilized by Schoology to provide an online learning environment for both students and teachers. Teachers will be able to share content in a real time setting employing features such as PowerPoint, whiteboards, document markup, and polling. These features are similar to what our teachers currently use with their iPads in the traditional class setting. By using web cams and microphones, students are able to interact directly with their teachers in a virtual “face-to-face” environment.
2. Where can I find Conferences?
The Conferences application can only be accessed through an NRCA Schoology account that is utilizing a browser (e.g. Safari, Chrome). Students CANNOT access Conferences through the Schoology app. Students will log into their Schoology account and select their particular course in the Courses Dashboard.
2.3. Select "Conferences"
Once in the Course, students will navigate to the menu on the left-hand side and click on the Conferences link.
2.4. Select Specific Course Conference
Students will click on the Conference Title hyperlink for the conference they are to attend. Conferences will be titled according to the following format: Period MM/DD/YYYY: Course. (Ex. 1st 03/17/2020: Engineering Technology).
2.5. Select the Microphone Option
Be sure to select the "Microphone" option in the event your teacher would like for you to participate in audio conferencing. If you choose "Listen Only", you will not have the ability to participate in audio conferencing via the microphone at all.
3. What should I Expect in Conferences?
Just as classroom dynamics vary from teacher to teacher, the Schoology Conferences experience will not be identical from teacher to teacher. However, teachers will communicate expectations and particulars to their individual classes, including details of dates, times, and duration of Conferences.
Students may find it helpful to use a family laptop or computer with webcam/microphone capabilities for Conferences rather than their iPad as it will free up their iPad to take notes or access other course related materials (textbook, completed assignments, readings, etc.). However, this is not required and all work can be done on the school-issued iPad.
Conferences will be accessible for 7 days in the “Completed” tab of the Conferences main page.
Here are some guidelines for students to maximize their time in Conferences:
- Teacher may remove the right to chat, speak, or record at their discretion.
- Anything posted to the Public Chat or spoken via microphone/webcam should contribute to the conversation and be directly related to the topic at hand.
- Students should attempt to not talk over one another.
- Use courteous, thoughtful, and respectful language in all communications. Maintain an awareness of your digital "tone."
- Contribute as much as you can, but give some room for others.
- Be present at all times; don’t multitask. Consider Conferences like a normal school experience.
- Avoid "disappearing" without explanation. If you get bumped out and can’t get back in, send your teacher an email.
- Do not allow any unauthorized guests, such as friends not registered in the course, to participate in Schoology conferences.