Yesterday, during the final presentations for my web design class, we video conferenced a professional web designer from New Hampshire into the class. This was an interesting first step to making the world a smaller place for my students. We used webex to run the video and Skyped the audio. It worked reasonably well, but in the future, someone needs to be by the video teleconference machine to let the guest interrupt and ask questions. Our guest had a hard time breaking in. He suggested an im client to chat with someone in the room who can raise their hand for him. I also think that having a two way video conference would be helpful. We only had one camera on this one.
We also had local guests who work on web design as part of their jobs. Bringing outsiders in really created a great environment for these presentations.
I’m going to try to do this more often in classes in the future so the students have experience speaking with professionals about their work. The audience really seems to increase the quality of the presentations as the students want to show their best side.