Summary of the Tutors discussion via Zoom, May 7 *
*This is the final version of the summary originally posted on May 8
Last week’s Board meeting (via Zoom) agreed to an invitation to Tutors to take part in a meeting via Zoom on coping with the shutdown. Nearly 30 met via Zoom nearly two hours. The following is a summary of the meeting.
It is unlikely that U3A will be back to normal for some months. The risk to elderly people in small rooms will deter members from returning to classes for some time, even when this is permitted. Room 4 has space for social distancing.
A modest number of established courses have continued since the shutdown with a majority of these using Zoom video meetings as their main platform. A small number of new online courses have opened with all but one using Zoom. There were strong support of the use of Zoom by tutors who have used it sofar. It is relatively easy to learn and participate. Some members are quite resistant to using it, and felt threatened by technology. Some tutors find that Zoom is not suited to their class. In general newcomers to zoom quickly become comfortable with it and enjoy the interaction. Members should be encouraged to join the class Come Zoom With Me which provides an individual introduction to Zoom.
It is likely that in the long term at U3A there will be a mixture of face-to-face course and online ones and hybrid classes
U3A should actively promote online learning and assist tutors (current and future) to manage classes online. It would be a good idea to have a forum or collection of helpful comments, guides etc on how to use Zoom, and other means, effectively and efficiently… using the website. [Done: see Zooming category on this blog].
U3A should investigate getting a Business subscription to Zoom which may be cheaper than paying individual licences.
An extensive tutorial was provided on the online enrolment and membership system, demonstrating how tutors can display enrolments, email a list and generally manage their class. Tutors were also reminded of the detailed guides for tutors and members that are on the website.
by John Travers