Across the country, colleges and universities are welcoming new students to their courses and campuses. Most institutions opt for an orientation program to acclimate students to college life, whether they’re living on-campus as a traditional student, living at home, or are a non-traditional student. For most students, this is a normal part of college life. Some students, however, can’t make it to these events.
- Orientation activities are often scheduled in the summer; some students may be working or too far from campus to attend.
- Non-traditional students may have responsibilities that prevent them from attending.
- Parents may not be able to take off work to attend family orientation activities.
- Online education students may be unable or unwilling to come to campus for in-person orientation.
Components of an Orientation Program
Take a moment and think about the components of your current orientation program. Most campus orientation programs include:
- A campus tour, with tours of residence halls, in many cases.
- Introductory “Welcome to College” speeches and sessions.
- Department-specific sessions to introduce students to staff and faculty in different departments.
- The opportunity to meet with various offices, including admissions, financial aid, and residence life.
- Informational sessions on campus life, study abroad, work-study jobs, and safety on campus.
- Opportunities and activities to encourage students to meet one another and begin making friends.
Creating an Online Orientation
For traditional students living on-campus, there are few substitutes for the chance to see their residence hall and try out the dining hall for the very first time; however, creating an online orientation can effectively serve the needs of students who can’t travel for an online orientation, and for parents who can’t be present at orientation day activities.
Above, we discussed six key components of a traditional, on-campus orientation. YuJa can bring all of those components online for your students and parents. You can opt to create your orientation sessions on the YuJa Public Channel, to allow anyone to see them, or on your Campus Channel. In that case, students and families with YuJa credentials can access orientation video content.
Let’s look at each of these six orientation components, if they’re online, rather than in person.
- Upload videos of your campus, video tours, and 360 degree video views to take the place of a campus tour.
- Use YuJa lecture capture technology to bring your “Welcome to College” speeches online.
- Encourage individual departments to host Video Classes and question-and-answer sessions for new students. These can be paired with introductory videos using lecture capture technology for each department.
- Use Small Group Video Meetings to allow students to meet with key campus offices. This secure technology enables a student or a student and her family to talk with key offices on campus.
- Record various informational sessions using the YuJa Software Station or YuJa Hardware Hub. This can solve space concerns, and allow parents or students to re-watch and review key information.
- Video Conferencing sessions and the Real-time Discussions can allow new students to get to know one another, even if they’re not able to meet in-person.