At the start of summer classes in mid-May 2014 our current synchronous online meeting tool, Blackboard Collaborate, will be replaced with collaboration tools from a company called Citrix. This new solution will better suit the learning and technology needs of La Salle’s online and hybrid teaching environments. The online HD video conferencing tools in the Citrix suite are easy to use with your computer’s VoIP audio and webcam and will work on a Mac or a PC.

The suite includes two options for meeting online, GoToTraining and GoToMeeting, but most courses will likely use GoToTraining since it has more features. Both tools include the ability share your screen, change presenters, hand raising, chat, and drawing and highlighting tools (Note that the drawing tools are not available on a Mac). In addition, both will have a toll-free phone number integration, meeting logs, and attendance tracking.

Some rights reserved by citrixonline (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Some rights reserved by citrixonline (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Two Tools for Large and Small Meetings

 Some rights reserved by citrixonline (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Some rights reserved by citrixonline (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

GoToTraining is the recommended tool for online synchronous course meetings, and is best suited for large class meetings and conferences. In addition to the features listed above, GoToTraining offers polls for real-time feedback collection, a timer, the ability to record and save sessions, and supports up to 200 attendees. It also includes a content library where you can upload and save reusable materials and tests that attendees can access before, during, and after sessions. There is little to no IT support needed for this tool as it is simple to set up and use. Once in your GoToTraining session, the software will display reminders and pop-up messages to help you navigate its features and facilitate your session. Want to learn more? Click here to view the GoToTraining Demo videos or go to our GoToTraining resource page.

For small collaborations and student study sessions, GoToMeeting is the better option as it is limited to 25 participants which keeps network lag to a minimum. Participants can enter a meeting by clicking a link and entering a session ID that you share in your online course or through email. Attendees can also download GoToMeeting’s free app for iPhone, iPad, and Android and attend on their mobile device. GoToMeeting requires little to no training, and session can be set up in just a few clicks. To see how it works, click here to take a quick tour of GoToMeeting.

If you do have questions or need additional support, see Citrix’s support site for GoToMeeting and for GoToTraining or contact La Salle’s Instructional Design Team at***Update: La Salle user accounts for GoToTraining and GoToMeeting are now available. Click here to request your account. Note that if you are teaching an online or hybrid course this summer, you should have received an account invitation in your La Salle email.

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