Are you looking for an innovative way to be more productive and improve your student’s experience with office hours? If so, Calendly may be just the technology tool for you! Calendly is a great way to simplify scheduling office hour appointments with students or meetings with colleagues. I use Calendly to manage my office hours and the results have been amazing. Calendly is as easy as 1-2-3. Simply set up your availability preferences, and provide students with your personalized Calendly web link. Students can easily check your availability, select the day and time that works best for them, then quickly schedule an appointment from any location, 24/7.
I offer appointments in 15-minute blocks, with a 5-minute buffer between. Once students select an appointment day and time, my Calendly settings require them to provide some basic information (e.g. Name, Student ID Number, Course Number/Section, and a brief description about the appointment topic, such as tutoring, advising, etc.), before confirmation. Having this pre-appointment information helps me prepare for the appointment.
Calendly’s appointment window option, allows you to close the automatic appointment scheduling feature hours or even days in advance of the appointment. For instance, I don’t allow students access to schedule appointments on Calendly within 12 hours of the appointment day/time. Students know they are always welcome to stop by during my office hours on a walk-in/as-available basis, but the appointment feature guarantee’s them the one-on-one time slot.
Upon completion of the appointment process, students receive a confirmation email that can be added to their Google or Office 365 calendars. At the same time, my calendar is automatically updated.
Not only is Calendly user-friendly, it also works with any device (e.g. smartphone, tablet, or computer). Concerned about double-booking? No worries, Calendly even checks for scheduling conflicts.
Calendly is by far one of my favor technology tools. It provides students instant access to my availability, eliminates email or telephone tag, improves the student’s experience in my course, prepares me for the appointment, allows me to easily blackout time for other activities, allows breaks between appointments, and best of all, for scheduling a single activity, such as office hours, it’s free! For a nominal fee, Calendly can be upgraded to manage additional calendar activities or projects.
For more information about getting started with Calendly visit their Knowledge Library at http://bit.ly/2gLrBSt. You may also want to view Calendly’s tips for managing office hours at http://bit.ly/2gK6vVO.
© 2016 Teaching and Learning Toolbox