When I worked as the Educational Technology Specialist at The Master’s University, I was always looking for ways to help professors maximize their impact. I designed a workshop entitled “The Canvas Next Steps”, where I taught the faculty how to make use of a variety of tools that would expand their reach beyond the classroom. One professor who attended this workshop decided to tuck away the Canvas Conferences, a video conferencing tool, for future reference. He messaged me a while later to share how this technology had enhanced his class and helped a student:
Tonight I had a student text me that she was not coming because she was in bed sick. Well tonight was a very important class and the first half of the class would be a brutal lecture to miss for the semester…We set up a conference in Canvas (in about two minutes) and had her join the class remotely. Since she was ill, we had her mute her line and message in her questions. It was extremely successful!
The professor later shared that he was able to successfully record the second half of the lecture for the student to make up at another time. I have also had other professors teach classes with a combination of students physically present and remotely attending in real time. Other professors regularly record their lectures and post them online for students to make up if they missed the class. In this ever shifting field of education, I believe that video conferencing technology is a great resource to extending the reach of the professor beyond the classroom.