Best Practices in Live Sessions

Best Practices in Preparing Live Sessions

  • Start early – begin preparing for your live sessions ahead of time.
  • Practice in the site where you will host the session.
    • This avoids learning on-the-fly and awkward delays during the session.
    • If possible, schedule a practice a session with on your own or with TAs.
  • Test content and features you plan to use.
  • Plan some activities and assignments which can be either prepared or debriefed during the live sessions.
  • Prepare for student participation:
    • What polls might you use?
    • Are there opportunities to use Breakout rooms for small group discussions?
  • Invite guest speakers to share their expertise and experience.
    • If your guests do not have University of Illinois’ domain emails (, be sure to manually add their emails to your Zoom meeting in advance, so they have access.
  • Look for relevant current events or topics related to your content.
  • Assign your TAs with specific responsibilities, such as monitoring the session participants’ chat, or keeping notes on student participation, while you will present.

Best Practices in Conducting Live Hybrid Sessions

  • Establish clear communication etiquette.
  • Trust your team of navigators and TAs.
  • Focus on your presentation delivery.
    • Locate your room cameras and look into them occasionally to make “eye contact” with your remote learners.

Best Practices in Conducting Remote Sessions

  • Prepare your space for success with proper light and sound treatment.
  • Use a wired connection or a stable wireless signal to run live sessions. Have a backup connection (data pack with your phone) ready.
  • Establish clear communication etiquette.
  • While you may encourage students to participate with their video cameras on, realize there are several factors that may influence their ability to do so.
    • They may have limited bandwidth available.
    • They may only have access to one device (such as a tablet or notebook), so propping up their camera may take away access to their keyboard for taking notes, etc.
    • They may have other privacy concerns.
  • Use polls and breakout rooms to encourage student interactions and participation.
  • Start your Live Zoom session without screen sharing. Stop your screen share time to time, so that students can you as their instructor exclusively. (Screen share dominates the Zoom display.)

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