Today's technology has provided us many tools for communicating with others. Since communication among teachers and students is vital in education regardless of the format of a course (through distance learning or face-to-face), instructors across the globe, as well as here at Virginia Western, are highly encouraged to take advantage of the communication technology available to them.
Adobe Connect, previous called Macromedia Breeze is a highly sophisticated, yet easy-to-use program that allows instructors and students to communicate through a microphone and/or a keyboard in real-time. Sessions can be recorded for administrative purposes, which are also highly encouraged by Virginia Western. Furthermore, Adobe Connect allows users to share content and/or screens with one another, all within a secure virtual environment.
As a registered Adobe Connect user, you have the ability to set up a secure virtual office to meet with your students on the Internet. After logging into Adobe Connect, you simply click a link to set up a new meeting. Once you have done so, Adobe Connect requires that you enter basic information with respect to your virtual meeting such as a description, a time frame, and the names of your attendees. Adobe Connect can also send out invitations via e-mail, inviting people to your virtual office at a specific time.
Once you have taken the appropriate steps to set up your Adobe Connect meeting room, you will receive a Web address (URL) on Adobe Connect's VWCC server. The URL will look something like this: http://live.virginiawestern.edu/… The Web address points you, as well as your attendees, to the virtual "space" where your Adobe Connect meeting room resides. Thus, you and your attendees will enter the "space" through this online address. Furthermore, you can incorporate this address into your Blackboard course so that students already in Blackboard can enter your virtual office by simply clicking the Adobe Connect link.
There are no major changes to the basic Adobe Connect environment after the updating of Macromedia Breeze to Adobe Connect. You need to go to the same address at http://live.virginiawestern.edu/ to login to Adobe Connect. The full name of this website is Adobe Connect Enterprise Server. You will login with your current login and password. None of that has changed.
There are three roles for Adobe Connect meeting attendees: Host, Presenter, and Participant. Each role has different rights in a meeting.
Hosts: This role allows you to set up a meeting, invite guests, add content, and design your meeting area. You can promote other participants to be hosts or presenters, and you can switch to preparation mode where you can create or edit the layout of your virtual meeting room.
Presenters: This role allows you to show content already loaded in the library or share content that’s on your own desktop. You can chat, answer questions, and broadcast live audio and video.
Participants: This role enables you to view and hear live broadcasts as well as view all content displayed. You can also have your own audio and video provided that the host grants you permission.
For the purposes of conducting virtual office hours for your students, you will more than likely want to make your students "presenters" of an Adobe Connect meeting. Below are step-by-step instructions for setting up an Adobe Connect virtual office.
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