The Online Learning Solution, also known as Remote Teaching and Virtual Classrooms is a tool based on Microsoft Teams being provided by Health Education England (HEE) to support the delivery of Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education (PGMDE) following the closure of physical learning spaces and the difficulty to conduct face to face learning.
Adopting the Online Learning Solution will provide a sustainable solution for more flexible and blended methods of delivery now and in the future.
- What is Online Learning Solution/virtual classroom?
- An online learning environment that allows for live interaction between the tutor and the learners as they participate in learning activities. The virtual classroom is a shared online space where the learners and the educator can work together simultaneously.
- Why is this necessary?
- The closure of physical learning spaces and the difficulty to conduct face to face teaching means there is a need to provide the NHS workforce with a more flexible and blended approach to education now and in the future
- What is HEE doing to support this?
- Leveraging the Microsoft agreement using 0365 as the preferred communication and collaborative tool across the NHS. Microsoft Teams is part of the 0365 suite and will be used as the tool of choice for delivery of online learning and education. HEE is working in collaboration with NHS Digital to support the long term adoption of Microsoft Teams for all trainers and trainees within the PGMDE community.
- Who is this solution for?
- Microsoft Teams is available across the NHS via the O365 licencing agreement that was recently negotiated between NHS Digital and Microsoft. This project is focussing on the needs of the postgraduate medical and dental trainees.
- What if there is an existing local solution in place?
- If an existing solution is in place within your community, and is working well to support your educational needs, please continue with this in the interim. HEE colleagues are asked not to renew existing licences for alternative solutions when they expire, and move onto the O365/Teams solution.
- Can I procure an alternative solution?
- Within HEE, Microsoft Teams is the preferred tool for online learning and should be used if no solution is in place or when existing contracts with alternative solutions expire.
- How can I access O365 and Microsoft Teams?
- If you are a HEE employee, you will be on O365 and should already have access to Microsoft Teams.
- If working within an NHS Trust, existing nhs.net users should have a licence allocated by their Trust to be able to access teams. If this applies to you and you are unsure, please contact your local IT department in the first instance.
- You can access Microsoft Teams by downloading the desktop application or via the Microsoft Edge browser, which are available for both Windows and MacOS. The desktop application will provide you with the best experience. Contact your local IT department to confirm you have this software installed.
- If you do not have either a HEE email address or an nhs.net account and can’t access Microsoft Teams (or you are unsure), please contact your local PGMDE business manager or regional lead in the first instance
- What features and functions does Microsoft Teams offer?
- Arrange a scheduled meeting/create and schedule a training session
- Invite trainees – both internal and external trainees
- Admit trainees to the meeting from the lobby
- Present and deliver content
- Upload files to share with the audience
- Upload learning in real time using One Note
- Collaborate with specific group/s by setting up break out rooms via channels
- Use the Whiteboard
- Use polls during the session by using Microsoft Forms or the chat functionality
- Interactively manage the session – using chat facility, emoji reactions, such as putting your hand up
- Evaluate the session using Microsoft Forms
- Record the session*
- Share the recording via the Teams group to all attendees
- View and record a list of attendance
* Note: If recording a Microsoft Teams meeting the course facilitator must read the following statement at the start of the recording as evidence of consent (this is in addition to the message displayed on screen that the meeting is being recorded):
‘By participating in this live recorded training session, you are giving your explicit consent to be recorded by sounds and video for training and monitoring purposes, including the sharing of such recordings on NHS learning platforms’.
If this is not done, the facilitator will need to gain consent by asking all participants to sign a consent form so that the recording can be used.
- What training is available?
- O365 Central SharePoint site – access for all HEE employees https://healtheducationengland.sharepoint.com/sites/office365central
- For non-HEE employees who are employed by Trusts – https://support.nhs.net/
- Training resources are now available via the Learning Hub which will be the key source of Microsoft Teams training for trainers and trainees moving forward, regardless of your employing organisation: