Sakai: Meetings

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Meetings (Web Conferencing, BigBlueButton tool)

Meetings (BigBlueButton) is an open source webinar tool available in Sakai that allows you to communicate with your students remotely. You can display presentations, use a white board, use audio and/or a webcam, chat with your students, and share your desktop. Meetings is a synchronous tool, which means users have to be online at the same time to interact. You can also add polls to your Meeting and record your Meetings, too.

Meetings overview for Instructors

At Durham Tech, on June 10, 2019 Meetings (BigBlueButton) was converted to the latest version, an HTML5 Client. What does that mean?

  • Meetings will now work on a desktop, laptop, Mac, and Chromebook:
    • IMPORTANT: Use the latest version of Chrome. Do NOT use Microsoft Edge or Internet Explorer.
  • For mobile devices: Use Chrome on Android (6.0+) and Safari Mobile on iPhone/iPad (iOS 12.2+).
  • Here is the latest video about the new version for Sakai, the HTML5 Client, for Instructors (Moderators/Presenters):

Creating and Running a Meeting plus Student Handouts *

Meetings Audio Requirements

Meetings Basic Features

For most of your meetings, you'll want to see who has arrived at the meeting, by viewing the User area; and you'll want to upload and display your presentation. If any of your students wants to "Listen only" or does not have a headset or speakers, you can communicate with each other by using the Chat box. If you want to record and share your Meeting, you have many options, provided you set up your meeting with the "Recording" feature.

Meetings Intermediate Features

Sometimes, you may want to use the whiteboard features, to draw on your presentation. Also, it can be helpful to use a different layout to emphasize different Meetings features. Some instructors like to share their webcam with their students, and/or want their students to share their webcams, too.

Meetings Advanced Interactive Features

We strongly suggest that you practice these features before your meeting. You can provide ad-hoc polls, or update your presentation, to generate polls during your presentation. If you need to demonstrate an application, such as Word, Excel, or review content on a web site, you can share your screen with your students. You can also share a video with your students! If you want to divide your students into separate groups during your Meeting, you can use the Breakout Rooms feature. Students can create shared notes and download the notes for later use.

  • Polls: You can create slides that generate polls or create polls on the fly during the meeting.
    • If you're creating a poll "on the fly": Below the Presentation area; click on the plus icon, then select "Start a Poll".
    • Otherwise, before your meeting, you can create PowerPoint slides with Multiple Choice questions/answers (or True/False or Yes/No questions/answers).
      • Here are a number of screen shots showing how to add slides that generate "automatic" polling at your Meeting.
      • When a slide contains a "poll" question/answers you've set up, at the bottom of the Presentation area, next to the plus icon, you'll see the Polling icon you can click on to start your poll.
  • Screen sharing:: Find out how to Share your Screen during a Meeting
  • Breakout Rooms: View the 34-second video on how to add and use Breakout Rooms or step-by-step instructions
  • Shared Notes: If you want your students to create notes as a group during your meeting, view this 60-second how-to video or step-by-step instructions:
  • Share Videos:: The 23-second video displayed below quickly shows how an instructor/presenter can share a YouTube video with students (the video has no sound):


What features will be added in the future?

BigBlueButton has a feature roadmap that you can check out at any time