Service Summary

Web Conferencing

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Microsoft (MS) Teams
MS Teams is an enterprise-wide collaboration suite that lives within Mason’s Office 365 environment. MS Teams provides chat, audio calling, video calling, screen share, and more with individuals and groups outside of a team structure.

Zoom
Zoom, available at gmu.zoom.us/signin, is a cloud-based web conferencing tool for video and audio conferencing, collaboration, and webinars across mobile devices, desktops, telephones, and room systems. Zoom allows you to meet face-to-face using HD video conferencing; share your desktop, documents, or individual applications with everyone in the meeting.

Blackboard Collaborate Ultra
Blackboard Collaborate Ultra is an always-on, real-time, online meeting tool available in all Blackboard courses. It lets you share your audio and video, add files, share applications, and use a virtual whiteboard to interact. Collaborate Ultra opens right in your browser, you do not have to install any software to join or manage a session.

Videoconferencing

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Web Conferencing Rooms

  • Many of the Web Conferencing spaces have a camera and microphone built into the room and are connected via the built-in PC. Some rooms may have a small, mobile, device like the Meeting Owl.
  • These spaces are reserved through University Events, The Registrar, or individual departments. The rooms are compatible with any computer-based web conferencing tool.

Videoconference Rooms

  • Videoconferencing rooms are compatible with the CRC version of Zoom and conferencing platforms that use SIP calling. Mason Pro licensed Zoom accounts are CRC capable. Faculty and staff are automatically granted Pro licensed accounts, students may request an upgrade. The camera and microphones in these spaces are part of a more complex system.
  • Legacy rooms require Enterprise Collaboration to bridge the connection between the scheduled Zoom session and the room system.

Collaboration & IM

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Microsoft (MS) Teams
Collaboration and file sharing occurring through chat or a team space should occur in MS Teams. Currently, there are no other ITS supported platforms for instant messaging.

Calling

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Each department has an assigned Telecom Coordinator who handles the administration and requesting of telephone services for all members of the department.

Avaya Phone System
Telephone lines and voice mailboxes are provided for faculty, staff, departmental spaces, and student organizations.
Microsoft (MS) Teams Calling

      • With a Calling Plan: MS Teams Calling Plans were originally made available as part of a pilot project testing a softphone solution. Calling plans are now available for all faculty and staff. Calling plans add several features for users including the ability to place external calls via the MS Teams application, using your office phone number. NOTE: This is an interim offering until a new telephone solution is selected.
      • Without a Calling Plan: MS Teams can be used for internal calls and voicemail by any Mason MS Teams user. This is different from a standard “phone call” in that you are not calling a number but rather an “identity.” From the Calls or Chat section, you can place an audio call to another Mason MS Teams user. If they are unavailable, you can leave a voicemail or send a chat message.

Getting This Service

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Please allow 3-5 business days for initial processing for requests submitted through TeamDynamix, 25Live, or Pinnacle.

Web Conferencing & Collaboration Tool Requests

Visit the Blackboard, Microsoft Teams, or Zoom service pages to learn more about the application, accessing your account, or requesting additional features.

General Space Requests

Requests for videoconference space may be submitted via 25 Live. Information on how to get a 25Live account is available at https://events.gmu.edu/scheduling/departments/.

Class Requests

If you would like your class to be placed in a videoconference classroom for the semester, submit a request to your department scheduling coordinator, who will work with the Registrar to submit the request.

Calling Requests

To request telephone services, contact your department's Telecom Coordinator.

Availability

This service is available 24/7, excluding planned outages, normal maintenance windows, and unavoidable events. Maintenance windows are Sundays from 7 to 11 a.m. but may be extended to 2 p.m., if needed. If maintenance is required outside of these hours, it will be announced on the Alerts & Bulletins page.

Enterprise Collaboration business hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Videoconference rooms are available outside of business hours if your event is self-sufficient and does not require assistance. 

Training

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Microsoft (MS) Teams

Zoom

Calling

  • Enterprise Collaboration provides documentation on using MS Teams Calling with a calling plan or without a calling plan, the Avaya telephones, and Call Pilot voice mail upon request.
  • A system tutorial is provided when a Call Pilot voice mailbox is set up.

Policy

All users of the George Mason University network must adhere to University Policy Number 1301: Responsible Use of Computing. Your Mason Licensed Collaboration accounts are NOT to be used for personal events.

For interviews, candidates and the committee members must be informed if the interview will be recorded. Written permission from candidates must be obtained prior to recording. HR procedures for recording and retaining web conferencing interviews are available within University Policy Number 2224: Recruitment and Hiring of University Employees. It is not the responsibility of ITS to be compliant with record retention.

All* web conferencing tools provided by Mason allow for recording sessions. University employees are advised that if recordings include student information (e.g., student images, full names, or grades), this information must be removed before the video may be shared outside the university. Videos may be shared internally with the university for academic reasons, as long as sensitive information (e.g., student grades) is removed. This is a requirement of FERPA, the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99), which protects the privacy of student educational records.

* Because Zoom Secure is HIPPA compliant, these accounts are prohibited from recording

George Mason University provides access to telephones to all faculty and staff, including wage and contract employees. The University telephone system is available to conduct university business. University Policy Number 2204: Telephone Use applies to all university faculty and staff, including wage employees and contract employees, who have access to the university telephone system and/or have been issued a university cellular telephone.

Additional Information

Collaboration Collective

The Collaboration Collective is a team for Mason's collaboration technology users to communicate with their peers and discuss new features, best practices, and other topics of interest pertaining to the following ITS-supported collaboration tools: Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and Blackboard Collaborate Ultra. This is not intended to replace submitting an issue via the ITS Support Center. The Collaboration Collective is moderated by members of the Mason community and members of ITS.

Submit an ITS support request if:

  • It is something that requires an urgent/timely ITS response
  • You are requesting information or troubleshooting assistance

Post in one of the channels if:

  • You would like to share a use case or feature you’ve found helpful
  • You would like to test out a new feature with your peers
  • You would like to know how your peers are using the tools

To become a member of the Collaboration Collective, log in to MS Teams, click Join or create a Team, and then search for Collaboration Collective or use Join a team with a code (code: pifyqb4).