Save time on assignment feedback, increase student satisfaction, and empower students to ask questions.
Before an important deadline, let students know that you'll be available for them to "drop by" virtually and ask questions during a specific period of time (e.g. 9-10.30AM on Thursday morning).
Tip: two good places to let students "drop by"
Educators using Aula have held the most virtual office hours by allowing students to ask questions both in the Class Feed and in a virtual hangout space such as Google Hangout or whereby.com. Whereby.com has the added benefit that it works without login (though not in all browsers, e.g. Safari).
If a student asks you a question in the virtual hangout that is of relevance to everyone, either post the question and the answer in the Class Feed instead or ask them to do so - for more inspiration, see this inspiration nugget.
If you have already allocated 'office hours', replacing them with virtual ones gives both you and your students flexibility on where you want to work from.
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