Scheduling for Educators: Virtual Office Hours

Education has changed radically this year, upending everything from pre-schools to doctoral programs. Remote learning is altering the way everyone must approach school. As a fully-remote company and one that has scheduled hundreds of thousands of virtual meetings, hopes to offer some useful time management ideas for educators.

Pro Tip: Educational institutions receive 30% off of our premium plans. Use code EDU30 through September 30, 2020!

Hold Virtual Office Hours

An open door policy is a great way to interact with students in a one-to-one setting. However, in a virtual learning environment, managing your time with them can be challenging. It’s not enough to open up a virtual conference, as you certainly don’t want them all showing up at the same time. You also don’t want to sit waiting (and waiting) as demand ebbs and flows week to week.

To address this, many of our education users have implemented office hours for their students using a series of short back-to-back meetings in a small time window. Let’s assume I want to hold office hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays from noon to 2pm. I want to allow students to book 10 minute blocks (you can go as small as 5 minute blocks) to accommodate up to 12 students.

First, create a Meeting Template and call it “Office Hours” or similar:

Next, set the hours to the time windows in which you want to hold your office hours:

Alas, semesters do not last forever, so we’ll want to allow this to be scheduled only during the first semester:

Pro Tip: Be sure to check your holiday settings so that your Scheduling AI will observe holidays!

Set your Lead Time (how soon to the meeting time it can be scheduled) and Breather Time (a time buffer between meetings):

Next, set your available slots to “All Available” so that students have maximum choice and be sure your start time options are set to “Every 10 minutes”:

Finally, add personalization options to give your students additional context on your calendar page and in the meeting invitation:

Add This Meeting Template!

Want to see this Meeting Template in action? It’s already created, simply add it to any account with the button below!

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Office Hours

Schedule virtual meetings with your students in 10 minute increments.

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Mega Pro Tip: Have teaching assistants? Add them to a Round Robin scheduling page to let your students book time with any available TA!

Want to discover even more ways you can leverage to better manage your time? Check out our series on Time Hacks for inspiration. We’re always on the lookout for new and interesting uses of the scheduling tool. Share your thoughts @xdotai!

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