This “Classroom Management” app provides teachers the ability to instruct, monitor, and interact with students on classroom computers individually, in groups, or as an entire class.
Instructors at my school have often asked if there was an easy way they could turn off Internet access on the computers in our computer lab classrooms. Last year we learned about Netsupport School, and discovered that there was in fact an affordable application that could deliver this functionality, and much more.
This year we licensed the application and rolled it out. With the help of Instructor Gary Muskin (thanks Gary!) we proved out the application's functionality through testing and trialing, after which we installed it in the 13 computer classrooms we have on campus. Gary conducted a series of training sessions for instructors, and we're now up and running, and quite satisfied with the application's utility and performance so far.
There is so much that this tool can do. In our initial introduction to faculty we've focused on a handful of specific functions:
- Control Internet Access: It's really easy to lock out Internet access on one, several, or all computers in a classroom, with a few clicks, once you are familiar with the Netschool Support interface. As for how you might choose to leverage this functionality, one recommendation is to turn off Internet access for brief periods, when you want students to focus on a lecture for example, rather than simply disabling it for an entire class. You can also blank out their screens and limit them from using the computer at all, but again, it is important to weigh how you use this capability.
- Monitor Computer Use: See what any student is doing on their computer – you can actually monitor more than one computer at the same time. There is an indicator that will let the student be aware that this is happening. This is good for various reasons – for example, having this capability can quickly lead students to adapt their behavior and limit their browsing of non-class related sites.
- Share Your Screen With One Or More Students, Or The Entire Class: This is a great instructional aid. Want to show students how to do something with a specific application, or share a video? Netsupport School makes it easy.
- Share A Student's Screen With The Class: How would you like to be able to let student share their desktop with the rest of the class, to demonstrate something, or share content they created? This app makes it possible for the instructor to facilitate this.
This is just a small subset of the types of things you can do with Netsupport School. To learn more, check out their Overview Page.
Another great thing about Netsupport School is that it's affordable – we licensed the product for hundreds of computers for well under five figures.
If you're looking for a tool with this sort of functionality, Netsupport School is a solution worth considering. Of course, if you are aware of similar tools and want to share some insights about them here, please comment and tell us about it. Thanks.
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