Keeping Up through Online Meetings

11 Feb 2010

I wanted to share the story of Health Care Ethics (GUMC), STIA 322: Global Health Systems and Politics, NURS 903: Research Methods, and NURS 175: Introduction to Nursing Research.  We have kept up all of the classes through “traditional” ICT (Blackboard, email), and have started to use Skype in combination with Yugma (an online meeting software program).  Tomorrow we’ll have NURS 903 and NURS 175 via Skype, as well as using the Blackboard discussion option.

A challenge is that more than half of the students have neither built-in microphones and cameras (webcams) or external ones. I have had group meetings with Skype before, when students could gather in one location — or when I’ve been out of town and have Skyped to the classroom — but the current weather conditions have hampered these gatherings, of course.  I would be happy to be part of a group that would work toward a revolving fund to support purchase of external webcams that could be either given to students who do not have this technology (nearly essential now) or lent to them a semester at a time.