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This document provides information to help Collaborate Ultra moderators quickly get started.


If you haven't already, please review the Collaborate Ultra Instructions, including the participant overview video. Just above the Collaborate activity in each Moodle course, there will usually be a link to these instructions which provide valuable information to get participants started.

As a moderator, you may find it helpful to review Collaborate Ultra - Help and Troubleshooting to become familiar with common issues.

In your course you may see one or two of the following Collaborate activities. Here's a quick explanation of who is a moderator in each type of Collaborate activity:

Collaborate Ultra (Class): Instructors are automatically moderators and students are automatically participants.
Collaborate Ultra (Team): Everyone is automatically a moderator. This allows student teams to use the Collaborate team rooms for meetings and to record them if they want. Each team automatically gets their own private Collaborate session and multiple teams can use the Collaborate activity at the same time.

Basic Information

This section contains information on common questions or misconceptions.

A Collaborate session allows for up to 250 participants.

There is no limit on how many participants have their video or audio turned on. However, Collaborate will only stream video and audio for up to 5 participants (including your own), automatically prioritizing participants who are currently speaking or have most recently spoken.

There is usually an increase in bandwidth usage when multiple participants have their video turned on; however, Collaborate will automatically vary the quality of the videos streamed to each participant depending on the participant's network capacity. If a participant's network capacity is extremely limited, Collaborate will reduce the number of videos shown to this specific participant. Audio will always be prioritized.

Phone-in PINs obtained through Collaborate Ultra (as opposed to the scheduler) are unique to the individual and cannot be shared. If you share your PIN with someone else, they will override your audio when they phone in because the PIN is for your connection. This allows Collaborate to automatically provide a name for participants when they connect.

When using Collaborate through a Moodle activity recordings will appear on the Collaborate activity page, under the 'Join session' button, usually within a few hours of the session ending. How long the recording takes to appear depends on how long the session is.

Moderator overview

The following video provides an overview of the features commonly used by moderators. This video builds upon the participant video found in the Collaborate Ultra Instructions.

Video topics

  • 0:10 Turn recording on/off
  • 0:15 Chat panel overview
  • 0:52 Attendees panel overview
  • 1:02 How to make participants presenters
  • 1:11 Participants vs moderators
  • 1:22 Detaching attendees panel
  • 1:35 Share content panel overview
  • 2:32 Session settings

Click here for moderator overview video transcript

Whiteboard and file sharing

The whiteboard allows you to collaborate with your students or take notes. You decide in Sessions Settings if participants can use the whiteboard annotation tools along with you.

File sharing is similar to the whiteboard in that it also supports annotation, but it is a file instead of a blank whiteboard. File sharing is what you would use to show presenation slides to your attendees (unless you require animations in your slides, then screen sharing is recommended). Upload GIF, JPEG and PNG images, PDF files, or PowerPoint presentations of 60MB or lower to your session. You can upload multiple presentations, however the total size allowed is 125 MB or lower for any particular session.

When uploading a PowerPoint presentation to Collaborate save the presentation as a PDF file and upload the PDF file instead of a PPTX file to avoid any issues with the presentation displaying incorrectly in Collaborate.

The following video shows how to use the whiteboard and file sharing.

Video topics

  • 0:06 Overview
  • 0:19 Sharing a blank whiteboard
  • 0:47 Sharing files (including PowerPoints)
  • 1:21 Navigating shared slides
  • 1:32 Next slide, previous slide buttons

Click here for whiteboard and file sharing video transcript

Screen sharing

Screen sharing allows you to share your screen with attendees, who can watch you demonstrate an application or web site. Screen sharing can also be used for presentation slides that include animations if you need attendees to be able to see the animations.

The following video shows how to use screen sharing.

Video topics

  • 0:04 Overview
  • 0:09 How to start screen sharing
  • 0:20 Screen sharing is recommended over application sharing
  • 0:30 Multiple monitor support
  • 0:37 Ignore the hall of mirrors effect
  • 0:54 Maximize content for your viewers

Click here for screen sharing video transcript


Polls allow you to ask your attendees questions and then show the results to everyone. You can display the poll results when attendees have made their choices. Polls are great to engage your attendees and keep them interested.

The following video shows how to use polling.

Video topics

  • 0:04 How to start polling
  • 0:20 Polling options, starting the poll
  • 0:27 How to provide poll question and choices
  • 0:40 Student view and making choices
  • 0:53 Instructor view of choices
  • 1:15 Showing responses to attendees
  • 1:27 How all attendees can hide/show the poll

Click here for polling video transcript

Breakout groups

Breakout groups is for small group collaboration. You can break up the attendees into smaller groups, send these smaller groups to their own Collaborate rooms, and bring them back to the main room when they're done.

The following video shows how to use breakout groups.

Video topics

  • 0:04 Overview
  • 0:17 Starting breakout groups
  • 0:26 Breakout group setup options
  • 1:30 Attendees panel shows who is where
  • 1:36 How to move between groups
  • 1:54 How to chat with all attendees
  • 2:12 Participants in breakout groups have presenter capabilities
  • 2:23 Updating the breakout group configuration
  • 2:43 Ending breakout groups

Click here for breakout groups video transcript

Practicing moderation

It's great to practice many of these features in advance of a live session with real attendees.

Here's how to practice by yourself as long as you have access to a Collaborate activity in a Moodle course shell. If you're an RRU instructor and do not have access to a Collaborate activity feel free to request access to one from CTET. The Collaborate activity should include a guest links tab (shown below)–if you do not see a guest links tab please contact CTET and ask for a guest link to be added. You may connect to a Collaborate session only once at a time using the join session button, but can join multiple times simultaneously using the guest link. So to practice by yourself you can join once using the join session button, copy the guest link and paste it into a new browser tab to connect again as a guest. You can connect as many times as you want with the guest link as long as your computer and internet connection can handle it. This process will also allow you to switch between your view of Collaborate and your "guest student" view of Collaborate to see how both the moderator and and the student might experience a Collaborate session. Guest links are usually configured with participant permissions but may be configured with presenter or moderator permissions; you'll see what role a guest is entering the session as by looking at the attendees panel. If you connect with three or more guests you'll be able to experiment with breakout groups by yourself, but make sure you mute your volume to avoid feedback between each of your "attendees".

Tech check slide

You may find it helpful to display a slide to your attendees for 15 minutes before the start of the session that provides instructions to attendees as they join. CTET offers the Tech check slide as an option.


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