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Live Chat guide

Create, manage and review real-time online chat discussions.

About Chat

The Chat activity enables students and lecturers to have real-time, online discussions. The activity contains a number of features for managing and reviewing chat discussions.

Chat limitations

  • The Chat activity requires your students to be online at the same time, consider if this will work for you and your students or if you should use a Forum for discussions and questions.
  • If a student joins in after a Chat has started, they will not have access to the previous questions and answers provided.

Create a Chat activity

  1. Turn Edit mode on.
  2. Open the relevant section, select Add an activity or resource. Choose Chat from the Activities tab.
  3. Name the chat room so that its purpose is obvious.
  4. Describe the chat room. Here, you can add any etiquette rules or suggestions for use. Check the box to Display description on course page.
  5. Open the Chat sessions setting.
    • Set the date for Next chat time.
    • Set the availability of your chat room from the Repeat/publish session times settings. You can leave the room open for discussions to take place at any time or you can schedule sessions. For scheduled sessions the Chat time(s) and date(s) are added to the Calendar.
      • Don't publish any chat times: No set times and students are welcome to chat at any time.
      • No repeats: Publish the specified time only. This could be used to schedule special events or meetings or simply to help students identify a common time in which they can expect to find other students in the chat room.
      • At the same time every day: Daily chats are useful for scheduling daily office hours or work sessions with students. 
      • At the same time every week: Schedule a chat for the same day and time every week, which could be useful for instance for meeting and reviewing key ideas and questions related to the week’s content/assessment.
  6. Save past sessions leave as Never delete messages.
  7. Everyone can view past sessions leave as No (The default setting is for all roles to be able to view past sessions. If you want to change this it must be done in Chat>Settings>Permissions).
  8. Select Save and display. A link to the Chat activity will be created.

Related guidance

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