When you wish to reach large groups in an online setting yet still have interaction with them, a webinar (live lecture) would be the ideal solution. You can use webinars to host short lectures and include interactive elements, such as quizzes, voting, and a chat. The webinar format is often used when you want to switch between plenary sessions and small group interaction, using so-called breakout sessions.

  • When you want to reach a large group of students and include interactive elements.
  • When you want to have that added value of an online webinar that allows you to have your students to participate in small group breakout sessions during your webinar.
  • When you want to explain or expose new information to the students.
  • When you want to replace an interactive lecture or seminar.
  • Interactivity is key: If you don’t plan to have interactive elements in your session, it’s highly recommended to use video lectures instead. Once made, these videos can be used for many years. You can also have a look at the Using Open Educational Resources page for inspiration.
  • Use a moderator: You can use a moderator to guide the discussions in the chat and support participating students whenever they have questions or (technical) issues. We advise you to check out the page Adding a moderator.
  • Recording the webinar: Recording and playback of a webinar is possible. Please consider these privacy guidelines for recording.
  • Don’t overestimate tech skills: Although students are used to working on computers and might use different educational platforms, don’t assume that they will understand everything immediately. Take some time to explain the used tools and their functionalities or provide tutorials.
  • Go easy on the tooling: There are many tools and applications available to support online webinars. It’s recommended to work with the minimum amount of tools needed and only elaborate when you feel comfortable enough.
  • Lecture style webinar: A shortened version of a lecture can be given during a webinar. Make sure to chunk the content into smaller pieces to keep the participants’ attention, alternating short informative sessions and activities, such as breakout sessions, quizzes and discussions with your students.
  • Students led webinar: Instead of explaining all the concepts yourself, you could ask students to make a contribution to the lecture. Let them prepare a short presentation about an assigned theory or concept and add additional information yourself when needed. This presentation could also be used as a formative assessment and - when recorded - be used as a resource during the rest of the program.
  • Guest webinar: Guest speakers can be invited to be a co-host of a webinar, to share their experiences with the student. You can help your guests by providing a dedicated time slot, a format to work within, and information about the different activities they can use.
  • Review & Informal assessment: You can also use the webinar to review the program's content or use quizzes to test the students’ knowledge about a theory or topic. You can let the students do a digital formative assessment with the help of the quizzes, in which each answer can be discussed directly after each question. This format can be used to prepare for tests or conduct an informal assessment for students to test their understanding. It is also suitable for the evaluation of your program.
  • Share videos: You can use existing (or new) videos and materials as part of your lecture, to share examples, demonstrations, or tutorials. Remember to keep these videos short (6-8 minutes) and relevant for all participants.