Professional Development
Internet Teleconferencing

Activity One
Conferencing on the Internet

  • Brief Description
  • Objectives
  • Materials and Resources
  • Activity Description
  • Internet Resources

  • Brief Description

        Conferencing brings together groups of people to share their experiences, knowledge, and expertise. Traditional conferences have required that people share the same physical space and time. With the advent of technology, and telecommunications, conferences no longer require a shared physical space, but still require a coordinated time for participants to meet. This activity introduces you to the basics of Internet conferencing, the types of conferencing tools available, background on how conferencing is supported on the Internet, and links to more information.

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    Materials and Resources

        In developing our lessons and activities, we made some assumptions about the hardware and software that would be available in the classroom for teachers who visit the LETSNet Website. We assume that teachers using our Internet-based lessons or activities have a computer (PC or Macintosh) with the necessary hardware components (mouse, keyboard, and monitor) as well as software (operating system, TCP/IP software, networking or dial-up software, e-mail and a World Wide Web client program, preferably Netscape, but perhaps Mosaic or Lynx). In the section below, we specify any "special" hardware or software requirements for a lesson or activity (in addition to those described above) and the level of Internet access required to do the activity.

    1. Special hardware requirements: none.
    2. Special software requirements: none.
    3. Internet access: Medium-speed (28,800 BPS via phone) or higher.
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    Activity Description

        Conferencing has long been a productive tool for professional development and learning by bringing together people with different expertise and abilities so they can learn from each other. The Internet, and other technologies, support conferencing across spatial boundaries by connecting people electronically. There is a variety of Internet conferencing tools, including video cameras, whiteboard software, groupware tools, and Web conferencing products.

    Each of the major categories of Internet conferencing tools are listed below, along with a brief description and the equipment required to support Internet conferences.

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    Internet Resources

    BBS Resources

    Chat Resources

    Internet Conferencing Resources

    Related Resources

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