IT guidance for teaching staff

Bethany Reid
Wednesday 11 January 2023

In the last few years, we have offered a rolling programme of training and familiarisation sessions to teaching staff, as well as in-room and online guides. Following recent feedback from teaching staff last semester, we’ve listed some guidance below, which we hope you’ll find useful.

Tips following last year’s feedback

Don’t unplug equipment – find an available port or ask IT for help

During the last semester, IT/AV Technicians were often called out to teaching spaces, only to find that essential equipment had been unplugged by the previous user of the room. This caused unnecessary stress for teaching colleagues and delayed the class from starting.   Generally, there should be no reason to unplug equipment. In doing so, you may remove an essential piece of equipment that’s needed for classes which follow yours.   

We understand you may want to plug in a device, such as a presentation clicker dongle, laptop or iPad cable, and there should be capability to do so without unplugging other pieces of equipment. If not, log a call with the IT Service Desk.  

To reduce issues for fellow colleagues, avoid unplugging equipment, but if you do, please ensure you return it to the state you found it. 

Order or request a wireless presenter remote if you need one (a ‘clicker’) 

We recommend that individuals have one or that School Offices hold a stock for loan. Unfortunately, it’s not feasible for IT Services to leave one in every teaching space. They are often unintentionally removed, or sometimes run out of batteries. We recommend Kensington Wireless Presenters. They aren’t expensive, don’t require software, and are compatible with our PC classrooms. Place an order using the IT purchasing form.

Sign out the classroom PC when you’re finished, don’t shut it down

Windows computers are set to install necessary updates once per month. If the PC is left switched on, this update will happen automatically between 20:00 and 08:00 hours to minimise disruption to users. The next user to logon to the machine will not be aware this update has happened. However, if the PC is switched off, it will update the next time it is switched on, potentially impacting your class.

To log off the teaching PC: 

  1. Select the Windows icon
  2. Select your name then sign out

Before class 

1. Upload files you may need to OneDrive for Business 

If you’re planning to use the teaching PC, upload PowerPoint presentations or documents to OneDrive for Business that you wish to display on the projector beforehand. If you aren’t familiar with OneDrive for Business, contact the IT Service Desk to arrange a short demo. 

Sign in to OneDrive for Business

2. Request a run-through with IT Services 

One of our IT/AV technicians can meet you in a teaching room to discuss your needs ahead of your class and how IT Services can support you.

There are also earlier blog posts and web guides that you may wish to look through.

If using Panopto, there is a video tutorial available for you to watch as well as a weekly drop-in every Wednesday in Purdie B from 2pm to 5pm until 29 March.

When you get to the room

1. Log in to the teaching PC or connect your laptop 

Centrally managed teaching spaces have been designed to offer a consistent experience for staff and students. Microphone and camera settings for each room are listed online.  

If you want to connect your laptop to the camera and microphone in the room, use the cable highlighted in the video below. 

If you are familiar with using a tablet when teaching, use the manufacturers own adapters to connect to the system.  An iPad will also need to be connected to power when sharing the screen. 

2. Check the display settings

To adjust the display settings:  

  1. Hold the Windows + P button on your keyboard  
  2. Use the arrow and Enter keys to select Extend 

3. Emergency call for assistance if you have any teaching room technology issues 

We appreciate things can go wrong and you may need urgent assistance during your class.  Call our emergency line, 01334 46 3674. This number operates as a “ring-a-round” and will divert to an available IT/AV Technician. Please do hold until your call is answered. 

Other services available to you

Get IT help 7 days a week 

Visit the IT help point at St Mary’s Library until Sunday 15 January or on the ground floor at Walter Bower House. From Monday 16 January, find us in the Main Library. Email, phone, and online help information is available on the IT website.  

Contact the IT Service Desk

Check IT service status for updates on real-time issues 

If a system or service you rely on, like eduroam or the Module Management System (MMS) isn’t working as you’d expect, there could be a wider problem that IT Services are dealing with. The best place to check is the IT Service Status page.  This page is updated as soon as any major issue is identified or reported to us. If nothing is listed here, please check with others – are they experiencing the same problem? If not, contact the IT Service Desk, who will be happy to check for you.  

Rebooting your device is always a good first step if the issue isn’t listed on our IT Service Status page. 

Check IT service status

Join the Microsoft 365 User Community 

Get updates about new features, learn tips from other colleagues and ask questions about Microsoft 365.

Join the Microsoft 365 User Community

Attend an awareness session

We run regular Microsoft 365 overviews in-person and online. Details are posted in the user community and on our Twitter page but feel free to request a bespoke session for your team if this is more suitable. 

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