Meeting on the Web
The recent explosion of social networking on the internet has led to a high demand for tools that allow people to communicate interactively. Messengers such as Yahoo, MSN, and GoogleTalk have evolved into quasi-web meeting tools that allow for real-time sharing of text, documents and other types of media. Some have video and voice features. Web conference tools like Elluminate Live! have been developed to include all of these functions in one online meeting tool. The result is a program that allows for a synchronous, real-time exchange between instructor and students.
Elluminate Live! is the premier web meeting tool in the state of Alaska. Hosted by UAA, it serves all three state universities and their affiliated community campuses in providing real-time, online, multimedia web conferencing capabilities. Access to Elluminate Live! is via two distinct paths. For course instruction, web meetings have been incorporated into UAS Online. For student, staff or faculty meetings access is through the UAS Online Portfolio system.
What Elluminate Live! has…
Elluminate Live! offers not only voice over the Internet for talking, it also offers interactive features, such as the Whiteboard, that allow students to sketch out ideas together. A chat area is available for questions and conversations, and participants can display spreadsheets, documents and other applications for students or meeting participants. Students or participants can also be easily polled and the results can be displayed.
Elluminate Live! Benefits…
There are many advantages to using Elluminate for web meetings meetings:
- Easy exchange of information through talking
- Recording capabilities for later review
- Allows for those who “miss” to still get caught up on the meeting
- Ease of bringing together people from all over the region or state without travel
- Sharing of documents for the entire group
- If needed, documents can be created by the group in a session
- Multiple ways of communicating – everyone can get their ideas expressed
- Works with low bandwidth, so access is not limited to those with broadband
- Older computers with speeds of 500 MHz will work, too
The only considerations are having a headset (headphones and microphone combination) and being sure that Java is installed on the computer. For Apple users, the second aspect is a non-issue since Java is pre-installed on Mac computers.
For additional information, how-to links and support contact information, visit the UAS eLive site at http://www.uas.alaska.edu/helpdesk/coursework/webmeeting/.