Thursday, November 15, 2012


  • Web conferencing tool used:
For the web-conferencing lab, my group used Google+ Hangout. I had never used it before, but it was fairly easy to figure out. I know there are other web-conference tools out there like Skype, Adobe Connect, etc, but since we all had Gmails Google+ Hangout was a logical choice. When you get to Google+, there is a "Start a Hangout" button where you can start a group meeting. We did this step first and talked for awhile about our presentation, how the class was going, and what features Hangout had to offer. We talked on there and got used to the video and audio of talking within a group. We quickly realized that Google+ Hangout doesn't automatically record the session. We had to log-out and then log back in using an addition feature called "Air". This then allowed us to choose to be "on air" and record or "off air" and just chatting. After we created a new hangout, we were able to talk through and point out all the features Google+ Hangout had to offer.
  • Advantages to using the web conferencing tool to discuss this project?
There were a lot of features we liked. The first aspect that was nice was that there was a chat bar, so even if you didn't have audio or video, you could participate. Also, people without video (maybe who just had a headset) could still participate. It was also nice you could show Youtube videos and share screens, so everyone was looking at the same thing at the same time. One of the best features we found for our group was the Google Drive was built right in. Since we had created a shared document to discuss the project already, we were able to pull it up and reference that.

  • Disadvantages to using the web conferencing tool to discuss this project:
We originally were all trying to talk and share ideas. We realized it was easier if someone was kind of the lead (typing on the document, moving us along, etc), so we had a general direction and then people could comment as needed. Next time, I think we would do this right away and save some time repeating what others said and missing information. We also now have all used it once, so it will be easier to log-in and get started.

  • Ways to use this in my classroom:
Since I teach secondary English, I could definitely see this being an asset in my classroom. When working on a group project, students wouldn't need to be in the same place. They could be anywhere and still collaborating. The ability to record would make it nice for me to watch the video and make sure the groups were working effectively and everyone was participating. The only drawback would be that students need to use Google+, which they don't have access to at school. This would also be a cool way to have a pen pal or talk to people from other parts of the world. The recording feature makes it a great way to monitor students and also be part of the activity without physically being in the discussion.

I was really impressed with Google+ Hangout and I'm glad we chose this for our group project. It's easy to use and will support the level of work we need to accomplish. Below is our first attempt at recording :)

1 comment:

Miztech said...

Loved the way your group knew to stop and start so that you could test out all the features. Google has done an good job with this product.