This topic will contain all the feedback related to Jens' Synchronous Session
For those of you who participated in my session, please fill out this survey to provide feedback: Jens FLO Session
I chose to facilitate a topic that I consider myself a novice in and that I find to be very important. My personal goal for this session was to try a new approach which I will use in future workshops. From the verbal feedback I received during the session, and my observation of the breakout groups, I learned that participants were discussing engaged and on topic. It seemed useful to most participants and their own practice.
My timing was off and the session took about 5-10 min longer than I had anticipated. Some of this time was spent in the initial setup and explanation of BBCU functions and my own introductions. The discussion in the breakout groups also took longer. I gave participants 3 minutes for quiet reflection and I don't know if this time was appropriate or not. I look forward to hearing back from my participants.
I didn't ask participants to share their intention and final reflection and some started doing so via annotation and I liked this. I will incorporate this in future sessions as an option. Anonymity here is a bonus, especially when sharing personal thoughts.
In sessions will larger groups, I had planned to change the breakout room sharing to sharing in the chat but I might do breakout groups after all. While participants see more of what others share in the chat, the depths of sharing in the breakout groups was what I hoped to achieve and I will think about how to do this in my own sessions.
I need to work on clarity for my instructions. For example, I prompted participants to take a screenshot of the breakout reflection prompts for their own reference and one participant was not sure what to do with it. Another small group had shared this screenshot, so it seems like participants can share while their in their breakout groups.
Overall, I am satisfied with how this session went, I think I provided value to my participants and will use a modified version of this going forward.
Thanks for this session. I found it interesting and relevant.
As I pointed out in your feedback sheet, for a short session we were able to go pretty far with the general inquiry around land acknowledgements. A few other observations:
I appreciated that you had nothing immediately displayed when I logged in. I go back and forth on this about whether to provide a slide with some instructions. But you saved that for when everyone was ready to go, and that worked well.
The little Collaborate orientation was well organized. I seem to recall it only took about 3 minutes, and it seemed enough to get people to operate the functions.
I notice that people who are comfortable with the environment feel ok about writing int the chat box while a speaker is holding forth. That seems to be a kind orf cultural convention relating to this space. But I've noticed others who don't, and I wondered if that's just not knowing the assumed etiquette about expecting to people to write and then returning to that chat space at intervals. In my dept, we have taken to spelling this out to our students, and this seems to encourage more writing of questions and comments in the chat space, and that's been a positive development in some of our synchronous sessions.
I found that combining the idea of land acknowledgement with the activity of writing our own locations on the screen was an interesting way to start. It made me think that one could integrate land acknowledgements into an introduction activity. I wondered if this might mitigate that idea that delivering a land acknowledgement was simply a pro forma step in the process of delivering a session.
I felt we were just getting going with this session when it had to end. But this is a constraint of the timing rather than any kind of flaw.
Thanks. That was excellent. I immediately copied the two sites we looked at for our own resources both at the JIBC and UBC where I work in different capacities.
You made a very interesting comment about cultural convention regarding the chat space. It has really got me thinking about the need for clearly sharing with learners/participants expectations regarding the tool. In addition, as facilitators we need to ensure we have clearly communicated whether we will be responding as well as what is appropriate chat.
We have had a couple of close calls at work lately related to the chat feature. Many meeting participants are unaware that chat is not private (even chat that is directed at a specific person). The host can see access all chats and they are also captured as part of meeting minutes.
Yikes, I did not know that about the individual chat messages being visible to the host. I find that set up is easy to get mixed up anyway, so one could mistakenly send a private chat message to the whole group. Kind of like using your outside voice when you should be whispering!
Any time my team has wanted to do that sort of thing during a Collaborate session/meeting, we use our Skype chat feature just to be safe!
Different platforms may have different abilities for the host to monitor chats. Now having said that, I am reminded to check that out in Zoom and Teams which are the preferred platforms at YU. Thanks for a good heads up discussion.
Hi Jens - thank you for facilitating today. You were clearly prepared and the session was well designed. I like how you were confident using the tool (giving orientation of Ultra), using breakout groups, going in and out of breakout groups etc. The icebreaker was simple (Grid) yet effective and you were able to tie it into the session on land acknowledgements.
Good use of breakout rooms (including signalling the end in 30 seconds via chat). It may have just been me but I forgot my group exercise in the beginning. Perhaps a repeat of instructions just before being dispersed to breakout rooms? Also - as you noted the recording breaks when the moderator leaves the main room (or there is no one in the main room). Its OK I've done that too - and you just have to press record again when you are back.
You wrapped it up really nicely and I like how there was a 1 min reflection. This workshop would definitely work on your institutional setting. Well done!
Just on that note of timing breakout groups. It seems like an obvious gap that Collaborate doesn't have this. But I checked with my colleagues who checked with Blackboard, and it seems that Blackboard has temporarily disabled the timer in Collaborate as of this past March as COVID-19 took hold and usage increased dramatically for Collaborate.
The following was part of Blackboard's Bulletin:
"Out of an
abundance of caution, and in order to maintain the highest continuity of
service possible, we have made the decision to disable specific features that
can impact overall system stability. These features are:
• Timer (a countdown timer that helps with classroom time management)
• Chat typing indicator (a visual indicator that someone is typing but have not yet completed their thought. The chat feature itself will still be available.)
• Netstats indicator (a visual indicator of connection quality next to each user)"
Jens, your presentation was great. I don't have much to add that wasn't already captured by other participants.
- You were clearly comfortable and confident - as a facilitator and with the technology.
- You did a good job of moderating the chat and participant tools.
- You had participants harness the Collaborate tools to fully engage in your session.
- You spoke at a nice, even pace. You didn't seem rushed even if you were concerned about time.
- My only suggestion would be to welcome participants as they arrive in your session. The dead air during the pre-session time is always a bit awkward. Small chat might help participants get comfortable with each other before the session gets underway.
Congrats on a great session. Your topic was thoughtful which made for an interesting breakout session. The links that you provided for traditional territories and languages were fascinating and require further investigation. Although the breakout session length was proportionally adequate more time would have been nice, but that is a common complaint even for F2F breakout sessions. And forgetting to turn the recording back on is a minor glitch that has happened before and will probably happen again.
All in all, a very well done facilitation that I was happy to attend. Keep up the good work, you will do well.
I really enjoyed your session, and appreciate both your topic and delivery. I appreciated your welcoming face upon arrival, and also appreciated seeing this rather than your front screen - it informed my practice today, so thank you.
In addition, I'm wondering if I might have your permission to use your housekeeping screen at the beginning that described the Ultra features - a work of art and totally needed for students as we introduce this platform!
Your session was well designed and well-timed for participation in the time we had. I greatly appreciated seeing some new kinds of action, like having us leave to go to a website you posted in the chat - this is good workaround for Ultra, which doesn't seem to like doing more than a couple of things at once. I also liked doing this because it gave me permission to be active and explore a little, with a time to come back.
I would love to see more - I think you have loads of ideas and knowledge, and we just barely scratched the surface. What session would you give the territorial acknowledgement for? I bet it will be great :)
Thank you for your presentation. The topic is a really important one and not talked about enough. Acknowledgments almost turn into a rote speech that lacks real feeling or understanding. Therefore your message to think about the land we are on was profound. I appreciate the way you connected it to family with your own in your slides. This made it more of a personal experience. Through the slide and interactive exercises you brought home to me something that is easily forgotten - what my relationship is to the land I live on and land acknowledgments.
This has been spark of encouragement needed to be active in integrating acknowledgements into my work practice in a more meaningful way from a place of sincere contemplation.
The map references from you and Laura were most interesting.
If I were to offer any suggestions, something that makes me feel more at ease and comfortable is some simple engagement with participants as they wait on video during a lead up to presentation time.