MODERATING LIVE SYNCHRONOUS SESSIONS.

synchfacilitation2.jpg

Before

  • If using a guest presenter, meet with them before the session to:

o Clarify nature and type of presentation
o Check audio
o Check content (slides? movies? application sharing? web tour? etc)
o Ensure level of technical comfort
  • If you are presenting do the above with yourself! Enter the room some time before your session and roadtest your content and use of tools like application sharing, whiteboard, etc
  • Prepare any quizzes in advance

On the day:

  • enter the room early and allow for social interaction
  • Have some activity ready for earlybirds
  • If you’re late starting, inform people why and how long till start time

Introductions

  • keep intros short
  • perhaps show video of you and other presenters for a few minutes (then turn it off)
  • have the modus operandi about questions/comments clear. eg during or after the session? in text or voice?
  • Announce role of any co-presenter (eg who is monitoring text chat?; addressing technical issues?)
  • if the session is being recorded, let participants know this.

During

  • monitor the text chat closely
  • keep an eye out for lurkers and invite them to speak/text chat when appropriate
  • encourage the use of a white board if you have one
  • encourage the use of the text chat
  • when you are about to do something that changes the view for participants (like application sharing, or web tour), let participants know in advance
  • make notes as you go so you have some questions up your sleeve if participants don't have any; these questions can also be prepared before the session and be ready for copying from Word or Notepad into text chat or on to whiteboard
  • copy questions/comments from text chat to Word or Notepad for easy copying/reference later

Conclusion

  • Finish on time
  • If going over time, ask participants if it’s OK, and let people know it’s OK if they need to leave at the scheduled finish time
  • Thank everyone for their participation
  • Announce details of any follow-up discussion and how to access recording (if session is recorded)

General

  • If you are facilitating keep your input brief if possible – only fill in the gaps if everyone else is silent. Your job is to get to others contributing
  • if you are presenting, don't speak for more than 5-8 minutes at a stretch; allow time for interactvity and participant input
  • be (and sound) enthused
  • allow people the option of contributing in text or voice
  • consider having a printed copy of the presentation at your side, or have the presentation open in another screen (typically in ppt, but often in a wiki or other webpage)
  • If you are the sole presenter do not address technical issues once the session is underway
  • No matter what, stay calm (at least on the surface!)

Further Resources


Please contribute your ideas to the wiki at http://synchfacilitation.wikispaces.com/