Evaluating Zoom Platform, February 2019Rebecca Morris2019-02-06T12:09:44-05:00
MOBILE FRIENDLY: ZOOM
Collaborate replacement’s many features are accessible on all devices
OUM is currently evaluating Zoom, a powerful and user-friendly communications utility enabling audio conferencing, video conferencing with screen sharing and annotation, and instant messaging, across desktop and mobile devices.
The University is evaluating Zoom as a possible replacement for Blackboard Collaborate, becoming the newest Single Sign-On-connected utility available to the OUM community. Some Term 1901 SBM lectures are being conducted on Zoom instead of Collaborate, with the possibility of expanding the trial to additional lectures as the term progresses.
“While Collaborate has served OUM well for many years, it is no longer being actively developed by Blackboard. Therefore, we feel it is time to move on to a more modern, flexible, and full-featured utility,” says Greg Beber, OUM’s Chief Information Officer.
Mobile device friendly
Zoom meetings and recordings may be attended and viewed on all computers, tablets, and phones. Collaborate’s inability to provide mobile playback has long been an inconvenience for OUM’s busy, non-traditional medical students.
While Zoom meetings may be attended from any computer browser, downloading the Zoom desktop client and mobile app is recommended. These apps allow the user to join meetings, schedule/host meetings, favorite, chat with or call friends, and more.
All members of the OUM community now have their own Zoom account, accessible via Single Sign-On at oum.zoom.us. To download apps, click the Downloads link on that page to find links to the Zoom desktop client and mobile apps, or visit the download page directly atoum.zoom.us/download.
“Your OUM Zoom account allows you to host your own personal meetings, so feel free to start a meeting and explore. You may even invite friends or colleagues for a video call to see how it works,” says Beber. “If you’d like to join a sample Zoom meeting (as opposed to starting one of your own), a link to an open meeting may be found here,” he adds.
Plenty of training and support
Zoom offers a wealth of support and training videos available for those interested in looking at how Zoom works before actually launching the utility (visit support.zoom.us/hc/en-us). Live daily training sessions are also offered to help new users get started, as are weekly live sessions that dive deeper into meeting features. There’s even a monthly “Ask Me Anything” session to secure help with any aspect of Zoom (visit zoom.us/livetraining).
To further explain Zoom information shared in the original 10 January Moodle post, a five-minute video was produced to clarify descriptions/screen shots and what to look for when participating in a Zoom meeting. OUM Tech Support/Help Desk is also always available to assist and feedback is appreciated.
(Important note: Zoom time zones are not currently set automatically. When visiting a Zoom Meetings link in Moodle, edit time zones by clicking the edit button, highlighted in the attached screenshot.)