Google Hangouts for synchronous online sessions


Google Hangouts is one of Google services which is becoming very popular with online educators around the world and gives you the option to do a video conference with the added features of a webinar. You can make an ordinary video call or go live on YouTube!

It also has smart device apps so everyone can easily use it: Androidios You can even make direct video calls from within your mailbox. If you decide to do a Hangout session on your laptop, don’t forget to install this plug-in first.

To cut the long story short, I am currently training teachers in Malaysia where they have an online course component moderated by a trainer based in Spain. Andy, the e-moderator and I decided to do a Hangout session with my teachers to boost their confidence towards the end of the course and encourage them to show up more often on the online course!!

I have taken screenshots of the steps we took to start the hangout and you can see the steps here:

The advantages of Google Hangouts:

  • Live YouTube stream (public or private)
  • Q&A app which integrates with the video for easy further reference
  • Control Panel to even ‘eject’ participants if they misbehave or share copyright-ed material
  • Chat box
  • Link Share box with the audience
  • Easy integration with Google Drive
  • Embed link to share the video on your own website
  • Screensharing
  • Photo capture app
  • YouTube editor to edit the video later and add your logo or even an introduction

The disadvantages:

  • Only 10 camera sharing participants
  • Only 8 hours of recording (isn’t it enough, though?!)

There are some other platforms to do similar things like SkypeVSEE and TokBox but I have found Google Hangouts more fun!

What’s your favourite online meeting app?


One thought on “Google Hangouts for synchronous online sessions

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s