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For Those Teaching Flex in Fall

Flex Classroom

Classroom Cheat Sheet

Information Services created a printable PDF cheat sheet. I highly recommend printing this out and bringing to each class.


You don’t need a stylus; your finger will work just as well. If you want to use a stylus, you should use a capacitive stylus. Information Services recommends these for purchase:

Online Learning Assistant (OLA)

The deadline to request an OLA from the Center for Teaching and Learning has passed. If you are working with an OLA, they can help you:

  • Start and stop your class recording.
  • Manage breakout rooms.
  • Facilitate discussion, chat, and questions.

Your OLA will be most helpful if you explain your teaching style and preferences before class. You can meet with them virtually after class to discuss what worked and what did not work.

Scheduling Your Zoom Sessions

There are various ways that you can do this. Generally, it is best to stick with the method that you are most used to. Here are the instructions that the Teaching Commons provides.

When I teach Flex, I make a note to so this when scheduling the Zoom sessions:

  • Schedule a recurring meeting. Same Zoom connection details for each class.
  • Only authenticated users can join. This means only students (and guests) with DePaul accounts can join the Zoom session. This can cause minor frustration for students who do not read instructions the first week. In later weeks, this provides more security and less opportunity to be Zoombombed. You would want to relax this security setting if you are bringing virtual guest speakers to class (who do not have DePaul Zoom accounts).
  • Mute participants upon entry. This greatly reduces audio disruption. Students must actively unmute their microphones to talk.
  • Automatically record meeting (In the cloud). Alternatively, ask your OLA to start the recording at a set time (so you do not forget) or set an alarm to remind you to record.
  • Share the Zoom connection information. I do this in D2L, my syllabus, and in a class email to students. I bring the Zoom meeting ID and password to class (on paper or on my smartphone, in large type so I can read the correct information and connect to the correct Zoom session without hassle).

The First Class

Classes work better when everyone has a similar understanding of how the class will be taught and what the appropriate etiquette is. I have learned from experience that dedicating time the first class to explain how I will use the technology can be very helpful. I use this first class to show how I will teach, and how students can interact with the technology. I make sure to allow time for students to ask questions and to test their technology.

Sharing Content

The Trimodal rooms allow you to share content in these various sources:

  1. Podium PC
  2. Document Camera
  3. Digital Blackboard
  4. Laptop or tablet (wirelessly)
  5. Student PC, laptop, or tablet (either wirelessly in the room or remote)

Before my first class, I practice the ways I intend to share content. Keeping things simple is recommended.

Classroom Interaction

Everyone has different teaching styles and preferences. Here is what has worked for me:

  • Actively engage the remote students first. Ask questions to the remote students first, and then pose the questions to the students in the physical classroom after.
  • Look at the camera when talking.
  • Repeat student questions. This ensures that remote students hear things clearly and in context.
  • 10-minute break every hour. Post a message on screen and in chat to say that on break.

When Technology Fails

Use the room telephone to contact Classroom Tech Support:

(312) 362-5900 (Extension 2-5900)

If you see an error message or a problem, take a picture of it with your smartphone.

Additional Resources

  • The 3-week asynchronous D2L course that CTL offered this Summer (“Flex Instruction Training Summer 2021”). The course has ended, but you can be added as an “Observer” to see the material.
  • The “Training Open Houses” that CTL and Information Services have been offering and are continuing this September. You can contact if you have questions.
  • The “Flex Fridays” sessions I have been offering and that I continue to offer this September. You can RSVP for upcoming session here.
  • The “Teaching In A Trimodal Room” webpage that I posted here.
  • The “Using Zoom+ and Trimodal Rooms” resource on the Teaching Commons website.

Flex Fridays: July, August, and September

Flex Fridays

Flex Fridays are an opportunity for faculty and staff to experiment with the new technologies in the Trimodal classrooms. These sessions will run Fridays from 10AM to Noon and 2PM to 4PM in DPC 5901 (we are normally done in the first hour, but the extra time is scheduled for additional practice). Faculty and staff can come to the classroom and physically test out the equipment or remotely connect via Zoom and see what the experience is like for remote students and guest presenters (physically visiting the classroom and testing and practicing is highly recommended). Investing time now will pay dividends later in the year. Faculty and staff can attend multiple sessions – they just need to register here:

The upcoming sessions are:

  • Friday July 30
    • 10AM – 12PM
    • 2PM – 4PM
  • Friday August 6
    • 10AM – 12PM
    • 2PM – 4PM
  • Friday August 27
    • 10AM – 12PM
    • 2PM – 4PM
  • Friday September 3
    • 10AM – 12PM
    • 2PM – 4PM
  • Friday September 10
    • 10AM – 12PM
    • 2PM – 4PM
  • Friday September 17
    • 10AM – 12PM
    • 2PM – 4PM

Camera Use In Zoom

This useful resource (that explores why students switch off theft webcams in Zoom classes) was shared in the Flex training that CTL is providing. Definitely worth a look.

Zoom Immersive View


Zoom has recently released Immersive View. Here is how you can activate this for Zoom meetings:

  • Log into
  • Click on "Settings"
  • Click on "In Meeting (Advanced)" under the "Meeting" tab
  • Activate "Immersive View"

So long as you are using a recent version of the Zoom app, you can activate the view in meetings that you host.


​Respondus Live Proctoring

The Center for Teaching and Learning has a created a new page that documents how to use "​Respondus Live Proctoring."

Zoom Live Transcript


Zoom has added an extremely useful new feature – Live Transcript. The Live Transcript provides either subtitles or a transcript window to your live Zoom sessions.

This can be helpful in several ways:

  • The transcript can aid in the creation of meeting minutes.
  • The subtitles and transcript can be helpful to students with English as a second or third language.
  • The transcript can be helpful to students who step away from Zoom for a few minutes. The transcript provides a record of what was missed.

Please note: The Live Transcript does not meet ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) standards. If you have students with a disability, please work with the Center for Students with Disabilities to make an appropriate accommodation.

Please note: Live Transcription can only be switched on by the host (owner) of a Zoom session.

Here is how you switch it on:

  • In your Zoom session, click on “Live Transcript.
  • Click on “Enable Auto Transcription.
    • This switches on the subtitles.
  • To switch on the live transcript, click on the downward facing arrow to the right of the “Live Transcript” button and select “View Full Transcript.

More information can be found here.


Tech Tuesday: mmhmm

Mmhmm is an exciting new interactive video presentation tool designed for educators forced (or actively embracing) teaching online.

The app launched recently, and already has several features that are perfect for online teaching – both live and pre-recorded:

  • Collaborative presentations: Two presenters can drive the same presentation in Zoom. Slide content is synchronized between both presenters, perfect for co-teaching and student feedback.
  • Mimics newscasts and television: You can add sophisticated background effects, video filters, slides, and movies to your presentations.
  • Record regular video or interactive presentations: Interactive presentations allow your audience to jump to particular slides in your presentation and change video settings.
  • Transparency effects: Rather than blocking slide content, you can appear as a hologram in front of your slides – so students can see you and your content simultaneously.
  • Laser pointers: Annotate slide content with laser pointers.
  • Works with Panopto, Zoom, Teams, Google Meet and more: You can use mmhmm to improve camera and sharing settings in videoconference software, or in your Panopto recordings.
  • And more…

Date: Tuesday November 17
Time: 12 p/m.
Location: Zoom

You can register

Zoom & Panopto: Classroom Recording

I have posted a video recap and resources from April's Tech Tuesday on "Zoom and Panopto," which largely focuses on how to use those tools to record in DePaul's regular classrooms. All can be found here.

Zoom: Tips, Best Practices, and Hacks

The next Tech Tuesday is on the 3oth April, 2019 - you can register

Zoom is an enterprise video/web conferencing and collaboration solution for all of DePaul's faculty, staff, and student employees. Zoom can integrate with D2L, as well as Outlook email and calendars. You can use it to connect to traditional Polycom videoconference systems, or to replace face-to-face committee meetings.

In this practical session we will cover:

• Zoom’s history, and what it does.
• The competition: Google Hangouts, GoToMeeting , Skype, and TeamViewer
• How to use it in a DePaul classroom to connect to remote presenters (and students).
• How to record classroom content.
• How to edit and share recordings with your students.
• How to create reoccurring meetings.
• How to use the automated transcripts.
• How to annotate your presentations (and let your students do this too).
• Best practices.
• Hacks: remote presentations, sharing screens, and image filters.


Information Services shared an update on Zoom. The easy-to-use videoconferencing system will soon be available to all DePaul faculty and staff:

As an existing Zoom user, your free account will become associated with DePaul and will be converted to a Pro account, giving you access to the full range of Zoom capabilities. In the coming weeks, look for another email from us including more detailed information on how we will be equipping and onboarding you with Zoom. You can find more information on the additional features you will receive with a Pro account at the following resources:

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