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Using technology to level the playing field

submitted by:
Margaret Bosenbark

Clinical Assistant Professor
College of Nursing
  September 07, 2020

This may not be a new idea, but this is what is working for my course.


I have all students log into Zoom both those at home and those in the classroom. Those in the classroom mute their computers, mics, and turn off their cameras. Those at home mute their mic, and turn off their camera.


I log into Zoom with the lecture hall's computer and run the class from the podium computer. To the side I have my laptop also logged into Zoom with my mic and computer muted and my camera turned off.

I have the "chat" box open on my laptop and use it to interact with the students on Zoom or those students in the classroom who don't want to speak up in that setting. This helps level the playing field so to speak.

Finally, I use the breakout rooms for group work and active learning. I allow Zoom to randomly assign students to a breakout room. A mix of "in-person" students and "virtual" students is created in each breakout room. This allows for rich dialogue and discussion both during the group work but also during the class discussion to follow as I call on certain breakout groups to answer given questions.