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Remote Teaching

Remote Teaching Information

First Steps

1. Determine your approach to teaching at a distance

  • When, where, and how will course material be made available to students?
    • Will you use UR Courses?
  • Will you have synchronous class meeting times?
    • If so, will you be using Zoom? Will you use a Virtual Zoom Classroom, Integrate Zoom into UR Courses, or Schedule your own Zoom meetings separately?
  • Will there be asynchronous class discussion required?
    • If so, will you be using UR Courses? Or another tool?
    • UR Courses can be used synchronously and/or asynchronously, depending on how you would like to use the tool for assisting with teaching.
  • Will you offer virtual online 'office hours' for students to contact you?
    • Will you set up open zoom meetings for students to connect to? If so, consider enabling the 'waiting room' for students waiting for their turn to meet with you rather than joining an in-progress discussion.
  • What does your faculty recommend? Are there faculty-specific requirements?
    • Check with your department, unit, or faculty for guidelines or expectations regarding classes. Your Faculty colleagues may also have valuable ideas to offer.

2. Set up the course in UR Courses, if you will be using this method

  • Instructors are free to choose any mode of teaching they prefer, but are encouraged to make use of UR Courses  
  • Students will have access to courses for the Fall term beginning August 15, 2020. It is recommended that information be added to the 'Course Summary' on plans for course delivery. This can be added without the course being made visible to students.
  • See UR Courses section below for more information

3. If not using UR Courses, communicate your approach to your students using the Class Notes portal

  • The Class Notes Portal has been set up to ensure that all instructors can provide information to students in their classes regarding their planned teaching methods.
    • Students have been directed to check UR Courses for course information
    • If a course is not listed in UR Courses, Students have been advised to login to the Class Notes Portal to find out how you are proceeding with course material and classes
    • Let students know which method you plan to use to communicate with them, how often, and provide alternatives to in-person office hours.

4. Set up Zoom class meetings if you will be using this option

Information to Assist with First Steps, and Recommended Tools

Tips for quickly preparing to teach remotely

You can read the tips for quickly preparing to teach remotely, compiled by UBC for further ideas.

In addition to these tips, pay attention to the following vital human considerations:

  • Communicate... Communicate... Communicate.
  • Help the students feel like there is a real person out there in cyberspace who is there for them.

Technical and Pedagogical Consultation

The Flexible Learning Instructional Design Team at CCE, together with the Technology Learning Centre staff, will offer pedagogical consultation as well as technical assistance.  

UR Courses

UR Courses provides a convenient and secure way to communicate and exchange materials in an environment that many students are already familiar with.

  • To log into UR Courses, visit urcourses.uregina.ca or click UR Courses at the top of the University's home page. Use your usual uregina.ca username and password, like you would for GroupWise email.
  • If you do not already have course material set up in UR Courses, request a blank UR Courses for your class by filling in the UR Courses Ticket form.
  • To use UR Courses for a specific class this term, and add the students as participants, login to UR Courses and use the new drop-down tools at the top right section in each course. You can make a copy of the course for the term, and populate the students from the appropriate Banner section.

UR Courses Support

We have a community with expertise that will provide you with the resources you need to ensure that you are supported at each step.

  • Training sessions and documentation are offered by the Technology Learning Centre (TLC)
    • There are regular TLC drop-In sessions offered via Zoom each Friday from 9:00 am to 11:30am.
  • The Flexible Learning (CCE) Instructional Design Team will be hosting virtual drop-in sessions
    • Drop-in via Zoom at https://zoom.us/my/ur.remote from 11:00 am to 4:30 pm Monday to Friday, from April 27 to August 31. See the UR Courses Instructor Guide page for more information. These drop ins will be for pedagogical and technical questions related to remote teaching, not just pedagogical.
    • Note: A Zoom host account is not required to access the virtual sessions, but you will be required to download the Zoom app when prompted. A device with a microphone will be required for the drop-in.
  • The Technology Learning Centre UR Courses Resources site provides manuals and other resources.
  • The UR Courses Instructors guide offers a searchable index with instructions for various UR Courses features and options, including how to add content, communication tools, assignments, quizzes, and exams, recording and hosting videos as well as a list of UR Courses Youtube video tutorials to assist with UR Courses setup.
  • For features or changes, or issues regarding enrolment, course restoration, guest accounts, and other more technical considerations, please submit a UR Courses ticket.

UR Courses Exam Support

If you are using UR Courses to facilitate a final exam, assistance is available to set up the exam, input questions, and review the exam ahead of time. We can also provide live tech support during a UR Courses final exam through Zoom.

Please visit the Instructor Exam Support page for more information.

Zoom Video Conferencing

Zoom enables you to host audio/video web conference meetings directly from your desktop, laptop, or UR Courses class site. Hosts can schedule and invite students and others from outside the University community to attend meetings.

  • Zoom includes features such as multiple screen-sharing, host and participation tools, chat, and options for saving the recording at the end of the meeting.
  • In addition to desktop software for PCs (Windows, Linux, or Mac), apps are also available for iOS and Android devices.
  • When you access a Zoom web link for the first time, if Zoom is not already installed on the device you are using, it will prompt you to download and install the Zoom software.
  • Most laptops have a webcam, speaker, and microphone built-in. Zoom can also be used on mobile phones and tablets. If you need to use a desktop computer and you do not have a webcam on your system, it is possible to connect by phone, but long-distance charges will apply.
  • The importance of a good quality headset and microphone, and a suitable location with appropriate lighting should all be considered when broadcasting.

Options for using Zoom for Remote Delivery

There are three main approaches to choose from in order to host your classes using zoom:

Option 1. Integrate Zoom Meetings into UR Courses

To add Zoom to a course in UR Courses:
  1. Login to UR Courses and access the course.
  2. Click 'Turn editing on'
  3. Click 'Add an activity or resource' in the desired section.
  4. Click the 'Activities tab' and select 'Zoom Meeting'
  5. Adjust the settings as desired.
  6. Select 'Save and return to course' or 'Save and display'.

For more details and instructions, view the Zoom Integration resource information in the online UR Courses instructor guide.

Notes:

  • You can create reoccurring Zoom meetings without set dates to start.
  • Make sure you create a unique reoccurring link for each of your courses. Make sure to enable the 'waiting room.' If you have your Zoom meeting set to 'join before host,' students can use your Zoom link at any time even if you are not present.
  • You may want to create a unique Zoom link for reoccurring office hours. Make sure to enable the 'waiting room' to avoid students popping in randomly.
  • If you integrate Zoom in to UR Courses as an activity, then students have to log in to UR Courses, and you will be able to see their real names.
  • Passcodes will be required beginning September 2020.
    • You will have to create a passcode or enable the 'waiting room.'
    • If you have a passcode, make sure to provide the full Zoom meeting link to your students. The passcode is automatically included in the Zoom link, so you do not need to send the students an actual separate passcode.
    • If you enable the 'waiting room,' no passcode is required.

If you do not already have a Zoom account, UR Courses has been configured to automatically create an account for you adding your Zoom Meeting activity, and will also automatically upgrade your account to a licensed version to allow for meetings longer than 40 minutes and up to 300 attendees.

Option 2. Use a ready-to-go Virtual Zoom Classroom

  • You may opt to use a Virtual Zoom Classroom. You and your students can meet in the Virtual Zoom Classroom that corresponds to your usual physical classroom at the class time you would normally meet.
  • A Zoom account is not required to access a Zoom Virtual Classroom. They are all pre-configured with secure settings, and the ability to host meetings for longer than 40 minutes.
  • For more information on this approach, visit the Virtual Zoom Classrooms information page.

Option 3. Use Your Personal Zoom Account

Within your Zoom account, you can schedule and host your meetings yourself for any existing class times.

  • You can communicate this to your students by manually adding the link to your UR Courses page, sending an email, or posting a link in the Class Portal.
  • For security, Zoom meetings require that a passcode be used, or that the 'waiting room' feature is enabled. 
  • Any meetings should be scheduled within the bounds of the usual class time in order to avoid any conflicts for students.
  • Basic personal Zoom accounts only allow for meetings of 40 minutes in length.
  • For meetings longer than 40 minutes, instructors can contact the IT Support Centre and request to have their Zoom upgraded to Licensed, which allows for meetings of unlimited length with up to 300 attendees.

Technical considerations for using UR Courses, Zoom, or other online tools

  • Visit the Technical Requirements page for more details on technical recommendations.
  • Note on Zoom audio
    • If you have any audio problems whenconnected to Zoom from a computer, mute your computer audio and also connect to the same meeting on your mobile phone or tablet.
    • Zoom works well on mobile devices, as the audio will come through your phone to you and others will be able to hear you speaking.
    • You can be connected to the same Zoom meeting with more than one device, so you can keep your computer connected as well for screen viewing and sharing.
  • Note on Zoom video
    • If you have a slower internet connection, try turning off Video and using audio only.
    • It is not ideal, but may help you to remain connected to the meeting without freezing.

Zoom Security

  • To ensure your Zoom account is configured securely, please view the Security Advisory on recommended Zoom settings.
  • Also, you can watch a video on the Recommended Settings for a secure Zoom meetings.

Recording and Uploading a Zoom meeting

  • You may wish to pre-record Zoom lectures, for students to view later.
  • If you are recording a Zoom lecture, please ensure you are in compliance with the Privacy Guidelines for Recording Zoom Lectures
  • If you need to record, select Cloud Recording which will save the recording securely on Zoom servers, and provide a link in your Zoom online profile under 'recordings'.
  • Students do not need to create a Zoom account to access the meeting and/or recording.

To Record a Zoom Meeting/Lecture:

  1. Click the Record button at the bottom centre of the Zoom meeting window
  2. Select 'cloud recording' if prompted
  3. Participants will hear an audio message that the meeting is being recording
  4. Participants will receive a pop-up message, advising that the meeting is being recorded, and need to either click 'continue' to consent to being recorded or 'leave meeting'
  5. Recording can be Paused and resumed by clicking the Pause button during the meeting
  6. To end the recording, click the Record button again or end the meeting
    1. A message will advise that the recording will be processed and made available in Zoom
    2. You will receive an email when the Zoom recording has been processed and is available

To Access a Zoom Recording:

  1. Sign in to Zoom online at https://uregina-ca.zoom.us/profile
  2. Click 'Recordings' in the left side menu (under the 'Personal' heading)
  3. Click the Recording name
  4. Click 'Copy Shareable Link' to save the link to the clipboard
    OR Click 'Download' to download the recording files to your local computer

Options for sharing a Zoom recording link:

Options for sharing a Zoom recording file (.mp4) by downloading and uploading:

  • Please ensure you are in compliance with the Privacy Guidelines for Recording Zoom Lectures
  • If you share a link to the online Zoom recording, you do not have to download or upload the recording.
  • If you choose to download the Zoom recording, you may upload to UR Courses using Kaltura CE
  • YouTube (Ensure you are using YouTube Unlisted, not public, due to privacy concerns).
    • This method is not reccommended, as it is not supported by the University of Regina.
    • Note: If any copyrighted material is used in recordings, YouTube may reject your video upload.
    • Note: Video upload length is limited to 15 minutes unless you 'verify' your YouTube account (link is on YouTube page when you are logged into your account)
  • Other video hosting services such as Google Drive, One Drive, Dropbox as also not recommended. Those files are also larger to download for students with slower Internet connections, and do not provide closed captioning and is a less secure method of transferring files.

Instructions for installing, using and recording in Zoom

Other Hosted Online Video

If you have a device that can record video, you can use an online video sharing site such as YouTube to post and share your lectures.

  • If you are using UR Courses, media can be uploaded to the Kaltura instance that is hosted on campus. For more information see: https://urcourses.uregina.ca/guides/instructor/kaltura
  • YouTube allows videos to be uploaded as unlisted so that they are not available through search and can only be accessed if you have a direct link to the video. This link can be shared with your students directly through UR Courses, email, or other messaging applications.
  • For information on how to privately upload a video to YouTube, please check out the YouTube Help site.

File Sharing

There are many options for sharing documents online. Class notes or other files can be shared by sending a link to students via email or another messaging program.

  • The University hosts FILR, located at https://filr.uregina.ca.
  • Log in with your usual uregina.ca credentials.
  • FILR will allow you to share a file with anyone as long as you have their email address.
  • FILR also allows you to see who has viewed the file.
  • Further information on how FILR works is available on the Information Services Website.

Non University of Regina solutions are also available, such as Google drive, Microsoft OneDrive, or Dropbox, but these options are not officially supported.

Archer Library

  • If you need access to print materials, you can ask us to digitize that material via our Quickfind system or our Online Digitization Form.
  • Online Library resources are available from anywhere. You may be prompted to enter your uregina.ca username and password to access them.
  • Please visit the Library Services web page for up to date information about library services.

Additional Instructor Resources and Support

  • Click the 'Resources' tab at the top of the page for additional resource links.
  • Click the 'Support' tab at the top of the page for additional support links and technical assistance.