AKA the “Owl software,” Faronics Insight lets you present and monitor devices in pre-configured labs. This guide aims to help you use this software in the Conestoga teaching context.
These suggestions were collected from those offered by Conestoga faculty currenty using Faronics. To learn more from colleagues using Faronics or contribute your own suggestions, join the Tech For Teaching Team.
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Never heard of Faronics before? Learn about this helpful classroom sharing and monitoring software.
If you’re newer to working with Faronics Insight and prefer to learn from a text, start with their user guide.
Open Faronics Insight from the task tray of your classroom podium computer. It will start up with your computer and connect to all logged in student devices.
Remember, Faronics is only available in pre-configured labs, and not in standard classrooms or BYOD classrooms.
The Teacher’s Console
The following video narrates an overview of the features available in the Teacher’s Console. This guide takes place in a Windows 7 operating system, so your classroom installation may look or feel slightly different.
The below suggestions require your familiarity with the Quick Start Guide. Refer to this document when needing guidance in these tasks.
Set up your view of student devices, so that you can broadly monitor students’ devices. Use the View all feature to do this.
Set students up for success. Consider how you may need to structure what learners can access to support responsible learning behaviours.
- If students are typically responsible, then leave the set up open. Monitor the thumbnails for unusual activity.
- If students have been distracted by particular apps, choose to Limit Web, Limit Apps, or Limit Print to help them use class time efficiently.
- Limit Drives often does not work effectively.
- Communicate expectations. Tell the class to what you have limited access and explain how you believe it will help their learning.
Show your screen on student devices by using the Show feature. Students may struggle to see a presentation screen over their monitors.
- Use Full Screen when you need their full attention.
- Use Windowed when you’d like them to follow along with your actions.
Monitor student activity in the main stage. You may want to mute the projector if you do this.
- Also rove around the classroom to offer support, using Faronics as the big picture to help you see who needs support.
- If many students are having similar challenges, ask if there is a volunteer who wouldn’t mind you presenting to solve in front of the class.
Help students learn from each other. To show student devices, select the student’s monitor from the Preview area and show on your screen. Don’t use the Show Student feature.
- Confirm a student’s permission first – this demonstrates respect for privacy.
- Display positive examples of students’ work accomplished so far in class.
- Ask a student or group to explain their thinking and processes to the class.
- Tell students that, at the end of class, you will randomly ask 5 students to report on their progress. This may help with accountability.
Use Control to offer support and guidance from the podium computer. You could use this to provide a demonstration to all students, or just one to one.
- If a student is having challenges, ask if they would present their challenge to the class to solve.
- If a student is far from the podium, invite them to the presentation screen to watch as you remotely control their device. Then they can see and hear you, and the solution is already in place.
Message students individually or collectively. Students may need help staying on task, and building time management skills. Send a Message to help them remember to get back to work
Right click on individual students to see options available to interact with them.
- If necessary, you can limit access to the internet, apps, or other features for just one student.
- If necessary, you can View Student Internet History or View Student Keystroke and Application History.
- Follow up on these interventions with an email after class. State expectations for the next class meeting.
Pose anonymous questions or quick quizzes using the Vote feature. It’s hard to see shows of hands or get consensus from facial or non verbal signals in a lab.
- First, ask students to do a Think, Pair, Share by posing your question.
- While they’re talking, set up your question in Faronics.
- Send it out, and ask them to submit their votes.
Show a video by setting it up to present on your main screen, and showing your screen on all devices. Turn on closed captioning and make sure it’s full screen.
- Avoid the Show Video feature. This feature only lets you show downloaded videos.
In Faronics Insight, right click on an individual student’s thumbnail to access monitoring features .
- Use the Send Student a Message feature to chat directly and privately to a student who may be struggling or off task. Offer help, or ask how you can help them get back on track.
- Support students by using Remote Control to control their computer. This lets you intervene and correct effectively and can be done in tandem with the Show Student feature.
- View Student Internet History, View Student Application History, or View Running Programs to determine the level of on-task behaviour they may be exhibiting. Intervene respectfully, if necessary, or follow up after class.
- If one app or program in particular is proving distracting, Limit Web or Limit Applications.
- You can perform the same actions with multiple students by holding the shift key and clicking to select them. Then right click or choose your action from the top toolbar.
Many faculty use Faronics Insight to support a controlled testing and assessment environment. Some use Faronics in tandem with exam accounts, which can be requested from the IT Service Desk.
Print the account ID’s out on slips of paper. On the exam day, distribute these to students. Sometimes the easiest way to do this is to place the slips with exam accounts at each desk station. Alternatively, write them on the board, next to a map of the devices in the classroom.
Students enter their exam account in the username field of the computer. They should then click into the password field. You may need to be explicit in this instruction.
- Confirm all students have their mouse cursor in the password field.
- In the device preview, select all the computers with the same exam account password. (In large classes, you may have more than one group of exam accounts, which will necessitate more than one password. Usually, there will be one universal password.)
- Choose Control, then Remote Control.
- In one of the controlled computers, type in the password and hit enter.
- Each computer will log in. Monitor this on the control console.
Each student will now be logged into their exam account. Begin the exam.