Moderator GTAs play an invaluable role in hybrid classrooms. You will be helping students to learn, and to contribute to one another’s learning.
Seminars and classes at LSE have a great variety of approaches and activities. This guidance is therefore written as a series of variables to discuss in advance with the tutor you are working with, so you can agree expectations for your role. It also includes some activities you might facilitate, and some of the capacities of Zoom.
Will you be in the classroom, or not? If you are in the classroom
- Will you be using the teaching PC?
- Will you be using your own device? If so, you will need to bring a laptop and a headset with a built-in microphone, and the tutor will need to make sure there is a chair and desk for you without exceeding the capacity of the room.
Will you be reading the Zoom chat?
- Will the chat be kept open throughout, or turned off for periods?
- Are you expected to respond to questions in the chat? Answering questions during a different activity could develop student understanding, but a second channel of communication could distract students. Agree with the tutor and let students know what is and isn’t possible.
Will you or the tutor be ensuring that contributions from students in the classroom reach the students on Zoom? This could involve repeating a contribution to make it audible or writing a summary in the chat.
Are you expected to direct a webcam, so students on Zoom can see students in class?
Will you be helping to facilitate group discussion on Zoom? For example, asking questions to help progress the discussion, providing additional information, or correcting misconceptions.
Does the tutor want you to place students on Zoom into breakout groups? This will depend on the number of students on Zoom, and the nature of the activities. If you are using break-out rooms:
- you will need to know how to create breakout rooms and move between them
- the host of the Zoom meeting must make you host, at the start of each class, as only the host can create breakout rooms. Co-hosts cannot create breakout rooms.
- You will need a suitable laptop or tablet. It is not possible to set up breakout rooms from an iOS device such as an iPad, or an Android device.
How are you expected to help students on Zoom contribute to the class?
- Will you look out for students who wish to answer a question? How will they indicate they want to contribute? You could use meeting reactions, or the raise hand feature.
- Will you select individuals to feed back from a discussion?
- Will you share points that students have written in the chat?
- Are you expected to ensure that students on Zoom appear on screen in class?
How can you get the tutor’s attention if necessary?