Thoughts on: Meeting with students via Google Hangouts


Midterms sort of snuck up on me this semester, and I told my students on Thursday that the midterm exam would be on the following Monday. We reviewed everything we’ve studied this semester on Friday by playing a jeopardy game and working on a review packet together, but I wanted to offer my students another opportunity to ask questions and get answers before the test on Monday. I decided to hold a Google Hangout today (Saturday) from 1pm to 2pm where my students could come and ask questions about anything we’ve been studying. I didn’t have high hopes of participation, and I made the event totally optional, but I had one student RSVP on the Google+ event and show up this afternoon.

It was a great opportunity for him to ask questions about the review materials we had been working on in class, and I could have another chance to measure where this particular student was in his understanding. The idea came to me after my boyfriend had a Saturday hangout for one of his online classes. It seems like a great way to offer students additional support, even though it means giving up an hour on the weekend.

Even though only one student took advantage of the opportunity, it was an enjoyable experience, and I would definitely consider doing it again in the future. Perhaps I can give midterm reviews/grade updates via Google Hangouts to avoid scheduling difficulties with meeting in person on campus.


2 thoughts on “Thoughts on: Meeting with students via Google Hangouts

  1. I teach where Adobe Connect is the preferred technology, but to me it seems too much like a formal classroom. Are you concerned about the amount of info Google is collecting on you and your course…and your students? That is what bothers me — nothing is private anymore.

    BTW — did you show slides or just talk with webcam?

    1. I’m not familiar with Adobe Connect. I haven’t become too concerned over privacy issues with Google, but it is something to consider when using Google. Our university accounts are via gmail now, and it was just easier to engage with students with Google Hangouts than some other medium (for our purposes). I ended up just talking with one student, not showing slides. We just talked about the review materials I provided during class to prepare the students for the exam.

      Thanks for your feedback/questions!

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