What is Web-Conferencing?
Tele-conferencing using Internet-based technologies rather than telephones. Faculty and staff are using it to:
- Bring in remote guest speakers
- Attend training webinars
- Hold virtual meetings
- Meet with students in field placements
- Develop consortial courses
- Develop international, computer-supported collaborative learning projects
(For more information, contact Jenny Spohrer.)
What Hardware Do I Need?
- High-speed Internet
- If you want video, you need a webcam. Short for "web camera", it is a video camera that feeds images in real time to a computer
- A headset microphone (or headphones, if your computer has a built-in microphone)
In a classroom or meeting room: Contact Multimedia Services (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information about setting up Skype in classrooms and meeting rooms. If you are booking a room for an event, you can request web-conferencing equipment for the event under "A/V Notes").
What Software Do I Need to...
- attend someone else's web-conference? The host will decide and e-mail participants instructions for how to join. For large, one-to-many webinars, the host will generally choose a platform that does not require participants to have an account or special software.
- host a web-conference? 3 platforms are commonly used on campus. Skype or Google Hangouts is best for most campus uses; since all participants will need a free account, you may want to poll them to see if one is more popular. To host a large, one-to-many webinar, you will need to use a Google Hangout "On Air" or one of Bryn Mawr's paid Adobe Connect subscriptions. See the guide below for a more detailed comparison and features:
Where Can I Host a Web-Conference?
No High-Speed Internet Connection?
You can still dial in to webinars that use an associated phone number, and some smartphones (including the iPhone) have native three-way calling capabilities. Wholly mobile conference calling is still on the horizon, but Überconference allows one person with a computer and Internet connection to host and manage an audio conference call in which others connect via telephone.
Other Collaboration Platforms
Outside of the video and voice conferencing platforms Bryn Mawr provides and supports, there are other tools for collaboration you can try out: