Internet Tools for Teaching

Education & Technology….YES!

Broadcast Yourself

on March 4, 2013

I used USTREAM (http://www.ustream.tv/channel/being-social) to conduct a discussion about “being social”  which actually lead into a discussion about what a school day would look like when social gets in the way. Most of the participants agreed that online learning or one-to-one environments cures the social problem if there is one for an individual. The participants ranged in age from 13-21.  While the conversation proved to be of some value, the experience was frustrating for all users.

It was a fail overall from a technology point of view. Skype and  Google Hang-out are far more efficient, but I wanted to try a site that I was unfamiliar with so that I could compare. The good news is that I had up to eleven people join, but not all were able to directly participate because of a variety of issues: unable to comment on participant’s end, unable to type in the box because it was skipping letters and would not send, did not seem to interface as easily using an iPad, for a different student the stream wouldn’t work without refreshing, the text box offered limited characters so you could not complete a thought, and by the time we decided to go through FB, the session had ended! Interestingly, broadcasting and recording were quite efficient, but the feedback had a seven second delay and clearly stated that, but when working in real-time, it’s too much of a delay. All of my posts were obnoxiously attached to my Facebook and Twitter pages, and I had to unpopulate them which I easily did. I did not like that I could not hear my audience. It made me feel like I was talking to myself. I was hoping for a talk-show like interface, but that did not happen. I am so glad that it was my own students, cousins and kids who joined this broadcast because they had enough patience and understood the purpose.

I “advertised” it via text mails, and Facebook public and private messages. Tonight was my air date because I have been traveling between Florida and Utah for a educational consultant trip. Luckily, I returned by Saturday at midnight to complete this project.

In conclusion, I will not use USTREAM, and I will stick with Google Hang-Out for webinars for now.

 


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