Videoconferencing in the Classroom

All Foundations (first- and second-year) lectures in the University of Toronto's MD Program are videoconferenced between the Medical Sciences Building on the St. George campus and the Terrence Donnelly Health Sciences Complex on the University of Toronto Mississauga campus. In addition, recordings are made of every lecture (both video and presentation materials), and are then posted online for student access.

Videoconferencing is also being used increasingly by the MD Program. Full support is provided by the Discovery Commons in the Faculty of Medicine. See: http://lecturesupport.med.utoronto.ca/support-videoconferenced-lectures for more information.

 

Lecture presentation guidelines for videoconferencing

To ensure equity and equivalency between the the St. George and the Mississauga campuses, the MD Program has implemented standards for presentations. Below are some guidelines for creating presentations for videoconferenced lectures, as well as established best practices for presenting.

Uploading Lectures

  • Ensure that your presentation file is sent or uploaded 10 business days before the lecture takes place to allow adequate time for necessary testing and formatting. Use UTMedfiles.ca, the file upload application for U of T Medicine, to upload your presentations and any associated files.

Laptops and Software

  • You must use the teaching station PC or the document camera to present your lecture. Use of laptops or other devices during the videoconferenced lecture is not supported.
  • If you use a Mac, you may create your presentation in Powerpoint or in Keynote; if you create in Keynote, technicians will convert it to a Powerpoint or Quicktime file and test it on the presentation computer in the lecture room before your lecture.

Content standards

  • All lecturers must disclose any potential conflicts of interest that they may have with commercial products, research findings, etc. mentioned in their presentation, on their second slide (after the title slide). See Procedure for Disclosure of Potential Commercial or Professional Conflicts of Interest by MD Program Teachers (PDF).
  • Videoconferencing usually reduces the amount of material that can be covered in lecture, so plan for 40- 45 minutes of material instead of 50 minutes.
  • Do not change the content of your presentation after submitting it for publication and posting; the submitted presentation will be used for your lecture.

Intellectual Property

  • It is the responsibility of lecturers to ensure that their presentations follow the guidelines set by the University and the Canadian government regarding intellectual property.
  • Go to www.teaching.utoronto.ca >Teaching Support for details on the regulations.

 

 

Lecturer Support for Videoconferencing

The technical support team provides technical assistance and training for lecturers, and also schedules, configures, and monitors every lecture from a nearby control room, allowing lecturers and students to focus on teaching and learning. Contact discovery.commons@utoronto.ca to schedule a training session on the equipment.

BEFORE the Lecture:
Contact the Discovery Commons Service Desk, Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm.
416-978-8504
E-mail: discovery.commons@utoronto.ca

DURING the Lecture:
All lectures are monitored by professional videoconferencing technicians at both campuses and most technical problems will be addressed before you even notice them. For immediate assistance just before or during a lecture, either:

  • use the support intercom on the Teaching Station
  • address the videoconferencing technicians by speaking into the presenter’s podium microphone or the lapel microphone
  • call the Discovery Commons Help Desk at 416 978-8504

If you contact technical support during a lecture, you will be talking to a live technician, and a technical support person can be in the room within one minute, if required.

AFTER the Lecture:
If you would like to provide feedback on your experience with lecture videoconferencing, please contact the Discovery Commons Audio-Visual Technology Team Lead, Janet Koecher (416-946-3285 / janet.koecher@utoronto.ca).