University of Minnesota Office of Classroom Management
Office of Undergraduate Education

Web and video conferencing

OCM supports both web and video conferencing. Use the comparison chart below to determine whether to use web or video conferencing.


  Web conferencing Video conferencing

Using the internet, web conferencing provides audio/video communication between two or more locations.


Using dedicated, in-room video/audio system, video conferencing provides real-time two-way audio/video communication between two or more locations. This is only available in select classrooms and requires a minimum of 5 business days advanced notice to coordinate.

Uses the internet via a third-party application (i.e. WebEx, Google Hangouts, etc.) on a laptop or computer.

Uses dedicated, in-room video/audio conferencing hardware system managed by OCM.
Requirements Requires a laptop, an internet connection, and access to your chosen third-party application for conferencing (i.e. WebEx, Google Hangouts, etc.). All participants must use the same third-party application. Depending on your location, laptops may need a microphone and/or camera. Requires that all sites on the connection have dedicated video conferencing hardware systems that use an IP or SIP address to establish a call, such as Cisco Telepresence. Video conference connections must be scheduled with OCM and coordinated in advance.
OCM room capabilities

Many OCM rooms are equipped with microphones and cameras for users to connect to via laptop for web conferencing. Find these rooms by using the room search; filter for "web conferencing."

Select OCM rooms are equipped with dedicated video conferencing hardware systems. Find these rooms by using the room search; filter for "video conferencing."


Note: Video conferencing room equipment does not work with web conferencing applications.

In-room instructions Visit the Classroom Audio & Video Resources page for assistance in connecting your laptop to in-room microphones and cameras. Visit room-specific instruction pages for video conferencing instructions:
East Bank: Peik 165
West Bank: Humphrey 20 and 25
St. Paul: Magrath 4 and Peters 145
General instructions Visit OIT’s self-help guides for assistance using Webex or Google Hangouts. See steps below to schedule a video conference.

Schedule a video conference

Video conferencing is only available in select classrooms and requires a minimum of five business days advanced notice to coordinate. Follow the steps below to coordinate your video conference.


  1. Request a space five business days in advance.
    • For OCM classrooms, use Astra Schedule to request one of the following:
      • Humphrey 20 & 25
      • Magrath Library 4
      • Peik Hall 165
      • Peters Hall 145
    • For departmental rooms, contact the department to make a reservation.

  2. Schedule a video conference.
    • Once you receive scheduling confirmation of the space, submit a Video Conferencing Request. To complete the form you will need the following information. Note that if your request is incomplete, it may take up to a week longer to process.
      1. The distance site location(s) (i.e., Institution, building, & room number)
      2. Technical contact information
      3. Equipment specs for the distance location(s). (e.g., IP or SIP address)
    • Confirmation of your video conference connection will be sent via email.
  3. Test the distance site connection (optional).
    • Established video conference sites, such as those at another University, typically do not require advance testing.
      If the distance site has not previously been tested, technical staff will need a minimum of two business days to complete a test setup with your distance site location to ensure the systems will function together properly. The testing and confirmation steps may take longer when establishing many connections to different distance sites.
  4. Operate the equipment.
    • While conducting a video conference, instructors operate the camera controls and determine what the distance site participants can/will see. For assistance in OCM classrooms, use the following instructions: Peik 165, Humphrey 20 and 25, Magrath 4, or Peters 145. For assistance in department rooms, contact the department.

Video conferencing support

In partnership with OCM, the Office of Information Technology (OIT) supports the dedicated video conferencing system. Services include:

  • Support of OCM classrooms with video conferencing
  • Training and incident response for video conferencing rooms (service charge may apply)
  • Assistance with determining the appropriate technology for supporting your activity


For assistance or training with video conferencing equipment, contact the Classroom Support Hotline at 612-625-1086 or

Video Conference connection issues for a call in-progress should be directed to OIT Technical Support at 612-626-4444, option 1.