As technology continues to advance at a quick rate, colleges and students alike are finding more ways to incorporate these technological advances into the classroom. And for good reason – many of these programs and services that enable students to video chat can be highly beneficial to education and learning for students. Skype, a software application that allows users to make voice calls and chats over the Internet, is no exception and is quickly making its way into several colleges and universities across the country. Skype can be a useful tool in the classroom and can actually give students a lot of opportunities that they may not have otherwise.
Using a program like Skype in the classroom would allow professors to set up meetings with industry or subject-specific professionals and have them talk to the class without having to actually be there. Professors that want to give students an inside look into a specific job, industry, theory, or other topic could ask the respective individual to essentially be a speaker or for a question-and-answer type of interview with their knowledge and insights. The speaker does not have to make travel arrangements or really do anything else and he or she can give their presentation over Skype for the classroom and students.
The use of Skype could also benefit those students that are having problems in their classes and are in need of some sort of help. Sometimes actually meeting with a tutor in person may not be possible and that is where applications like this can be beneficial at school. Skype can enable remote tutoring to take place as a tutor and student could have a chat over instant messaging, or a video chat and both could also share file transfers, if they needed to. Tutors that offer their help can set times with students and the tutoring can take place then.
Skype can also offer students that have different schedules and those that can not be on campus to attend meetings on a specific time and date the option to hold their meeting from different places. Sometimes it may be hard for students that live off campus to meet up with one another to discuss projects or other topics for their classes, so a quick Skype set up could allow students to have their meeting wherever they are, so long as they have an internet connection where they are.
Skype can also be used in the event that a student can not make it to class, should they have a valid reason for not being able to show up. The program could also be used for students that can not make it to class and have a presentation scheduled for that day. Some college and university professors allow students that can not make it to class for an excused reason the opportunity to listen in on the class lecture that day by setting up a Skype chat for that day, according to an article posted in The Chronicle of Higher Education.
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