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Back to School Updates in Microsoft Teams  

Over the last few months, faculty and staff at Seton Hall have been working tirelessly to enable remote learning. Several months into remote learning, educators share what worked, what challenges persist, and what they expect in the next school year. A key tool for remote teaching at Seton Hall this semester and in the future HyFlex model is Microsoft Teams. By popular request, Microsoft is announcing new Teams features, including an expanded audience view of up to 49 participants, custom backgrounds, class insights, and virtual breakout rooms, among other new features, that will help support educators, faculty, and students in the upcoming school year.

For educators, seeing all their students’ faces at the same time makes a big difference in student engagement, as well as social and emotional connection. Microsoft is expanding the Teams grid view to 7×7, which will accommodate up to 49 participants at once on a single screen. Faculty will also be able to create virtual Breakout Rooms so students can work within their smaller groups on a discussion or assignment, then easily be called back to the larger group. The new features will be rolling out this summer and will be available by the start of the fall semester. 

7x7 Video Teams

Educators also need more options to ensure every student can participate and that every voice is heard. In Teams, students can Raise Their Hands during class meetings. Educators can also see Attendance Reports and view Class Insights, an intelligent data analytics breakdown showing how students engage with the class, including assignments turned in, activity metrics and grades, with a new trends view coming in time for fall.

insights in teams

For educators, maintaining student security and control over the classroom experience is critical. This summer, Microsoft is adding new meeting options in Teams that prevent students from starting meetings unattended, let educators determine who can present in a meeting, and give educators the ability to create a Meeting Lobby to ensure only assigned students can join a meeting—adding to Microsoft’s approach to privacy and security, which supports more than 90 regulatory and industry standards, including the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) for the security of students.

Enriched classroom meeting experience – available now

Enriched classroom meeting experience – coming soon

  • 7x7 video support on desktop (see 49 people at once)
  • Only Educators can start the meeting - Students must wait in the lobby
  • Breakout Rooms
  • Meetings attendee limit increasing from 250 to 300

Categories: Science and Technology

For more information, please contact:

  • Milan Stanic
  • 973-761-7566
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