Due to the current Corona situation and the associated restrictions, no face-to-face events can take place at the start of the summer semester. Since digital teaching and knowledge transfer has been continuously expanded at the THM for several years, we are very well prepared for this situation.
A large part of the teaching is carried out using digital means in our online learning environments, e.g moodle pictured. However, to ensure that teaching does not remain a digital one-way street, video conferences and web meetings should support teaching as efficiently as possible, albeit virtualized.
The THM has tested various services and found a provider in ZOOM that is technically efficient, user-friendly and reliable.
Zoom is available on all technical platforms, such as PCs, mobile phones, etc., and can be used simply by installing the respective client. There are sufficient licenses for ZOOM that allow teachers to set up virtual meeting rooms with up to 300 participants. We expressly point out that participation in a Zoom meeting is voluntary. This applies to all formats, whether lectures or general meetings.
Zoom is also used by numerous other universities. The general staff council, the IT security officer and the data protection officer of THM were involved in the decision. The decision in favor of Zoom is consistently seen as necessary to ensure the study operations and the special challenges of the Corona crisis. The THM is aware of the special responsibility it has for its members and relatives.
Zoom is a cloud solution, ie the software is operated by an external provider. The THM has concluded a contract for order data processing with this provider, which has been checked by the data protection officer. This also created the formal requirements for employment at the THM . In addition, appropriate settings were made by ITS, which further increase the data protection level of the software compared to the standard settings and limit residual risks for users.
Of course, the THM has also read and tracked the reports of errors and data protection concerns when using ZOOM that have been accumulating in the past few weeks. However, these could be largely eliminated by the correspondingly fast updates from the product manufacturer. We all know that despite our best efforts, software is never programmemed without errors. However, from the developments of the recent past one can see that Zoom takes the problems seriously and reacts promptly to such reports. Nevertheless, we will continue to monitor developments so that we can react if necessary.
Taking into account the special situation, the use of Zoom is justifiable and necessary in the opinion of all those involved in the decision-making process and after weighing up the advantages and disadvantages.
Zoom video conferencing FAQ
What can I do with Zoom?
- Create unlimited meetings with up to 300 participants
- Participation with PC/laptop with webcam and microphone, smartphone or telephone
- chat function
- Screen shares, e.g. for presentations
To be used for:
- events and seminars
- general meetings
- Short presentations
- Consultations, consultation hours