Elluminate at UW
Elluminate is a web conferencing technology that enables a group of people, at their own computers, to conduct a real-time meeting or class, over the Internet. An Elluminate web conference can include two-way audio among participants, a presentation screen for PowerPoint and other text or media presentations, an interactive whiteboard, application sharing, directed tours of websites, and more.
Elluminate brings to your classes or meetings the ability to discuss and present without everyone having to be in the same location. Each participant, at his or her own computer, has a front-row seat for the presentation. Conversation and discussion in the online meeting is conducted through VoIP (Voice over IP) technology (real time audio communication through the computer). Participation in conversation is best through a microphone headset, and is free to all participants. If participants are not equipped for audio participation, the Elluminate meeting interface includes an online chat window in which participants can raise questions or add comments.
Visit the Elluminate corporate site for more information, demonstrations, and free training.
The University of Wyoming has a limited amount of Elluminate accounts available. Requests for Elluminate accounts should be sent to Elluminate-Accounts@uwyo.edu with an explanation of your proposed usage. The UW Elluminate-Accounts committee will review requests and allocate Elluminate accounts based on needs and availability.
The Elluminate website will be an invaluable resource to your becoming an Elluminate-savvy online moderator. They provide free, instructor-led online training; on-demand, general and specific recorded demonstrations; an extensive library of support documents; a 24/7 Help Desk; a detailed Knowledge Base; inclusion in the "Elluminati User Community"; and, white papers, solution briefs, best practices articles, and other supportive documents.
Whew, OK, one step at a time.
- Go to the Elluminate website (http://www.elluminate.com/) and begin getting oriented to their extensive support resources. Don't try to digest everything in your first visit, but orient yourself to the organization of the web site so you can efficiently find the help and instruction you want when the need arises.
- Visit the First Time Users page (http://www.elluminate.com/support/), and go through the simple steps of preparing your computer for Elluminate sessions.
- Try out an Elluminate session! Go to the Training and Documentation for Moderators page (http://www.elluminate.com/support/docs/8.0/moderator.jsp) and launch the Getting Started with Elluminate Live! recorded session.
- Sign up for free live, instructor-led training at the Live Online Training page (http://sas.elluminate.com/site/external/event/schedule?etn=training&eef=1). This is the most beneficial thing you can do because no one else is going to be able to train you as thoroughly on how to use Elluminate! Begin with the session, Part 1: Getting Started, which will provide you a basic introduction to the moderator tools. Then, move on to Part 2: Next Steps, where the trainer will give you the opportunity to get your hands on the moderator tools to see how they can support your meeting objectives. Part 3: Advanced Tools is also available, which will be helpful after you've had a little experience using the basic tools.
- Explore the Elluminate library of
Quick Reference Guides (http://www.elluminate.com/support/docs/8.0/moderator.jsp). You may want to start building a favorites
folder or binder of these.
With this basic training, and maybe some of the pertinent Quick Reference Guides at hand, you're ready to begin preparing your own presentations and developing your moderator skills. Plan some practice sessions, either on your own, or with a colleague. The more you use Elluminate, the more comfortable you will become with it.
Support: Get help from UW’s IT Help Desk or directly from Elluminate
The IT Help Desk can help moderators and participants get into an Elluminate session, and they can answer technical questions. The IT Help Desk doesn’t provide answers to functional questions on how to do things once you are in a session. The above mentioned training will answer all those questions. The IT Help Desk hours of availability are posted on the Help Desk page (http://www.uwyo.edu/infotech/Support/helpdesk.htm) and are updated often to reflect extended hours, holidays, and closings. If it’s after hours, you can leave a voice mail or choose the emergency option to report network problems.
UW’s IT Help Desk: 766-HELP (4357), option #1
Elluminate provides 24/7 help desk and live online support (http://www.elluminate.com/support/). Click on the Self Help Support Portal button to find phone numbers, search their knowledge base, browse their library, or submit a ticket. They can also help you through their live chat support center.
Elluminate support center: (http://www.elluminate.com/support/) 866-388-8674, option #2
The UW Elluminate Manager site is where you will schedule Elluminate sessions, modify your profile, and generally manage your UW Elluminate activities. Go to the UW Elluminate Manager page (https://sas.elluminate.com/), and log in (upper right) with your UW Elluminate account credentials.
Schedule an UW Elluminate session
In the UW Elluminate Manager site, you can schedule your Elluminate session and invite participants.
- Launch a session schedule from the link in "To create a new meeting click here."
- Title your meeting and schedule it.
At the bottom of the scheduler window are links to expand the page to reveal Participants settings, and Advanced settings. Settings in these areas are not required for a standard Elluminate meeting. The Participants area lists people who have UW Elluminate moderator accounts. This Participants list is only useful if some or all of your meeting participants already have moderator accounts. It is not necessary to have a UW Elluminate moderator account to participate in an Elluminate session. Advanced settings allow the moderator to preload presentation materials and set other conditions. This can all be done in the live session if the moderator arrives at the session early, which is recommended for a number of reasons.
To complete creating a meeting, click on Create, where you will be given the opportunity to email the meeting invitation to participants.
- Review the conditions and instructions
- Invite participants by clicking on the link in "To send email invitations click here."
- Three email options are presented:
- Moderator Email. You're the moderator; leave this checked to receive a confirmation and reminder of your meeting.
- Participant Email. This would be the email sent to any other UW Elluminate moderators you invited through the Participants option in the previous scheduling screen.
- Additional Participant Email. This is the recommended email notice to distribute to participants you want to invite to your Elluminate meeting. You may enter email addresses of participants in the available box. However, a better approach may be to copy the message here and paste it in a new email message in your email system. Or, enter your own address in the box to receive a copy of this email, which you can then forward to participants or a distribution list.
- Review the text of the Additional Participant Email, and change or add to the instructions.
- Click Submit to send out selected emails.
You have successfully scheduled a UW Elluminate meeting!
Audio Equipment Recommendations
Audio conferencing in an Elluminate session requires all participants to be equipped with microphone and speaker capability for voice over IP (VoIP) communication. Participants are highly recommended to use a microphone headset, or at least an echo-cancellation microphone. The problem of open microphones and speakers is the echo they create. When audio is received by participants with open speakers and microphone, the sound loops back through the any participant's open microphone, creating a disruptive echo. Participants with open microphones can still participate, but must be asked to mute their microphone whenever not speaking.
UW does not recommend a particular brand or model of headset, but we have found the Logitech Premium Notebook Headset is effective and inexpensive. Similar types of headset microphones are commonly available.
Preparing participants for their first time Elluminate session
Preparing your invited participants for their first Elluminate session is critical to ensuring a successful web conference. In your meeting invitation:
- Recommend or require that your participants have appropriate audio equipment - a microphone/headset, or an echo-cancelling microphone and speakers.
- Direct first time users to Elluminate's First Time Users support page (http://elluminate.com/support/index.jsp). Directions there will confirm or install the necessary Java software, invite new users into the "Configuration Room" to test their connection to an Elluminate meeting, and step them through an audio setup wizard to confirm their equipment is correctly selected and configured. Finally, an online orientation the features of an online web conference. Come time for your meeting, new users who have taken the few minutes to step through this process will be prepared, equipped, and ready to participate.
- Encourage participants to join the web conference early, and anticipate late arrivals to your first session since some users will still confront obstacles arriving at their first sessions (the one's who didn't go through the First Time Users directions!)