Many instructors regularly welcome guest speakers into their classes, exposing students to content experts, expanding their professional networks, and helping them see the connections between the classroom and various professions. In some ways, technology helps facilitate this, allowing instructors to invite guests from virtually anywhere and asking those speakers to devote only a small amount of time out of busy schedules (no more driving to campus, figuring out parking, finding the classroom, etc.). However, there are some important technological and logistical considerations to consider for an online or hybrid class.
- Access to the meeting: Participants outside the university without IU computing credentials can access Zoom meetings with the Zoom meeting ID or URL.
- Zoom Security: In addition to giving the outside speaker the Zoom meeting ID or URL to join the meeting, also share with them the passcode you set for the meeting. If you have a waiting room set up, make sure to remember to admit your guest speaker during the meeting.
- Elevate speaker to co-host: By default, the guest speaker will only be a participant in your meeting and will have the same abilities as any other participant. If you want to allow the guest speaker to have additional abilities, like screen sharing or muting participants, consider making them a co-host.
- Permission for Recordings: If you plan to record the meeting and share it with your class in Canvas or Kaltura, remember to ask for permission to do so from the guest speaker prior to the class session.
- Student Privacy: In a face-to-face class, students may choose not to introduce themselves to guest speakers or only introduce themselves by their first names. However, in a Zoom meeting, their participant name will likely be their full name and will be viewable to anyone in the meeting, including the guest speaker. That could convey a student’s enrollment in the class, a part of their private educational record. You can allow students to change the name displayed under their video and in the participant list to shield that information being shown to the outside guest. You can restrict this ability to change names in future class sessions where there are no guests.
- Zoom Etiquette: Ask students to review these etiquette tips for attending a class or meeting remotely prior to the session.
- IT Support: Your guest may be nervous about connecting via a new-to-them video tool. It’s a good idea to share your cell number with the guest for any last-minute needs or changes, as well as the phone number of your campus IT Support Center.