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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Designing Hybrid Workshops

This guide is meant to provide resources and best tips for those planning and designing hybrid workshops and sessions. It covers best practice for pre-workshop planning and design, day of presentation tips, and post-workshop considerations.

This page covers what to do on the day of your workshop so both in-person and virtual attendees have a good experience. Covers best practices for both the presenter and the chat moderator for the event. 

Presenter Tips

It's the day of the workshop! As you get ready to present, keep in mind that you are presenting to two different audiences: those in person, and those over Zoom. It can be easy to prioritize one group over the other as you present, and you may focus on in-person attendees to the detriment of those online. As such, some best practices for hybrid presenting include: 

  • Use the microphone.  Even if you are in a small space, use the microphone. It's better for you to be a bit loud than to find out participants had trouble hearing you and couldn't understand what you were saying. 
  • Acknowledge both in-person and virtual participants at the beginning of the workshop, and make sure to address virtual participants throughout the event. Even acknowledging virtual participants only at the beginning shows that you want them there and intend to include them throughout the event. 
  • Alternate between looking at in-person participants and at the cameras in the room. This can be difficult to remember, but doing so can help virtual participants feel more involved in the workshop. 
  • Repeat all questions before answering them, and if possible, identify the question asker. In-person and virtual participants may not be able to see or hear questions from the other group. Repeat all questions before answering them to make sure all participants understand what you are talking about and can continue to follow along with the workshop. 

Chat Moderator Tips

Having a chat moderator is a great way to keep virtual participants involved in the workshop. If you are able to have a chat moderator for your event, consider following the best practices below: 

  • Welcome virtual participants as they join the workshop and keep them updated about any mic checks, technology issues, and other important updates. As the chat moderator, you should keep virtual participants up-to-date about when the workshop will start and how they should handle any tech issues, send questions in the chat, and address other needs as they arise. 
  • Keep an eye on virtual participants and make sure to mute them when they aren't speaking. This can help prevent audio issues throughout the workshop. 
  • Copy and paste any resources or links mentioned during the presentation into the chat. This allows virtual participants to easily access resources and keeps them involved throughout the workshop. 
  • Read questions from the virtual chat aloud, and rewrite questions asked in-person in the chat. As mentioned in the Best Practice Tips for Presenters, reiterating these questions can help both in-person and virtual participants keep track of what question the presenter is addressing.