Video conferencing/Consultation-hours

In this module you will learn how to map consultation hours with an open source video conferencing software. This involves the following steps:

  • (Setting up the room) How to set up a room that is suitable for consultation hours? In contrast to a meeting/meeting in a group, where everybody can join if he knows the link to the meeting, it is essential that not everybody can enter a room, but the person who is doing the consultation invites the person into the room.
  • (queue for the consultation hour) Usually the duration of a consultation hour cannot be estimated well, especially if unexpected problems are discussed. Therefore, a queue for consultation hours with video conferences must be mapped in front of the digital consultation room. You learn here,
    • '(Students/Pupils/Customers) how you as a waiting person can deal with this digital consultation hour situation and how you can bring digital documents to the consultation hour and discuss them together?
    • (Teaching staff/Service support staff) How to work through the queue step by step and how to inform the students/pupils/customers so that they can prepare themselves accordingly for the digital office hours. Particularly in COVID-19 times and a radical change in our daily work processes, the providers of consultation hours must assume that not everyone who comes to the consultation hour knows the procedures and may be overwhelmed by the new situation.
Digital Consultation-hours - participation and implementation for homeoffice

Please use and update this learning resource too in your institution for the implementation of digital consultation hours. It is appreciated to contribute additional use cases and additional helpful notes or illustrations to the learning resource for more comprehensive training and support of these processes. If necessary, you can also create your own use cases with audio comments on a Wikiversity page by application of Wiki2Reveal presentation with embedded MP3-audio comments and make them available as a link in a learning resource (see Wiki2Reveal.

Setting up the consultation roomEdit

The following settings in BigBlueButton ensure that a queue is managed by the provider in BBB and that waiting persons can be invited into the consultation room with a click. Switch on the second option, that configures the room to be a consultation hour video conferencing room. The moderator/teacher/staff member sees the people waiting in front of the room to enter. The moderator accepts and selects the people from "outside" to enter the digital room. The moderator/teacher/staff can also send a deny as a response to the request to enter. Set the checkbox "Moderator approval before joining" to the use the room for consultation-hours.


Notes for students/pupils/customersEdit

  • Ideally bring documents in PDF format to the consultation hour. With LibreOffice you can create collect screenshots of meeting results and take the important results and sketches from the meeting with you. To do so, please install LibreOffice and set up the page format in landscape format if necessary, because the jointly created sketches in BBB also have a landscape format. For collaboratively generated textdocuments you can just export the joined notes in a format of choice (txt, odt, docx, html, pdf, ...)
  • (Landscape or Portrait Meeting Minutes?) If you also want to share the notes in LibreOffice outside the videoconferencing environment you can use the preset "portrait format". If you want to share the results with the videoconferencing environment then the landscape format is better suited due to the fact the most users look at the document from a landscape screen format.

Notes for the providers of digital consultation hoursEdit

  • If you use an OpenSource BigBlueButton server yourself, you can point out this documentation to the people in the queue so that you can prepare for the meeting accordingly.
  • You are also welcome to supplement these Wikiversity Notes in the learning module with other notes that you would like to share with the Wiki community.
  • If you use other video conferencing systems, you can use this documentation (see also Open Educational Resources) and adapt it to your institution's IT infrastructure, taking into account the Creative Commons license. Many aspects are independent of the videoconferencing software used, for example, if it also allows shared notes and sketches to be created.

Helpful missing components for this learning resourceEdit

Helpful support for learners would be

  • a Screencast in Wikiversity, which shows how two people work together on shared notes during a consultation in BigBlueButton and how they jointly create and add a sketch (if necessary, add a reference to an existing video here).
  • a support how documents are uploaded to the meeting and shared.
  • notes that he

Translated with (free version)

Learning TasksEdit

  • Explore how queing for consultation-hours in an administrative use-case is performed in BigBlueButton in comparison to a real queue in front of an office?
  • Assume students are waiting for consultation of a lecturer at a university. What are the settings of the video conference in BigBlueButton, so that students are visible in the queue and the lecturer can see the queue call them into the video conference room one after another.
  • How can the queueing be optimized for the students or the clients waiting for cosulation?
  • How can digital documents in PDF format be taken to the consultation hour and discussed together during the consultation?
  • How to create a document in a BigBlueButton video conference during the consultation hour, which can be recorded as the result of the consultation and taken out of the meeting (shared notes).
  • How to save a jointly created sketch in a LibreOffice-Draw document for further use and also take it back to the consultation hour as an exported PDF document at a later session, so that it can be annotated again and further additions can be made (e.g. open LibreOffice-Draw in landscape format before the consultation hour and save important sketch as screenshots from the BigBlueButton consultation hour as a digital document). Explain why it is essential that the tools for Linux, Windows and MacOSX should be available in the same way as freely available tools!