Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Virtual Office Hour

This year, because of scheduling issues, I was really having a difficult time setting appropriate office hours that would work for my students and I.  Following the excellent advice of my 2.0 friends, I decided to initiate a Facebook Group chat as a shared, public office hour instead. 

I am here to report that it worked WONDERFULLY!!!!  At least 13 students participated in the conversation - several of whom decided to help each other out afterwards.  Though the conversation was somewhat superficial - its early in the semester after all -  I also felt like "lurkers" and quiet members were able to benefit from overheard advice and assignment clarifications. 

In my pre-virtual, brick-and-mortar office hour, I occasionally saw one or two students for lengthy discussions....or brief ones. Many times, I saw no one.  This method increases the amount of contact I have with students, and that's got to be a good thing :)

6 comments:

  1. I totally agree and I am doing the same! Starting next week I will have virtual office hours during their lab time so they can ask questions while in the lab.

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  2. Just to clarify, you were using the "chat" function in FB groups, right? I think that is the best option.

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  3. Yes - the group chat function is what I was using. Love it.

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  4. this feels like part of you two's evil plot to get me to reveal my facebook page. ;)

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