As I’ve been doing consultations, I quickly found that the students needed a lot of the same info, and I was giving them information in basically the same format. So to cut down on the time I spend with them, I created a consultation template. I started off using Google Docs, because I thought it would be easy share with the student, and they could keep the digital copy to edit on their own. But then I discovered that students don’t have access to Google drive through their VCU email. (I think that’s really lame – students should be able to use Google Drive as a safe and easy way to store and access their schoolwork.) So using a Google doc didn’t have the anticipated ease of sharing I thought it would. Google docs didn’t have an “official” feel to them. Not very snazzy or pretty. That’s really not very important, but I figured I would give it a try in some other format. So I created a new template using Publisher. Much snazzier. I could print this out and hand it to them, or convert it to PDF and email it.
But do I really need something that looks pretty? More importantly, do the students? No. Additionally, Publisher format doesn’t allow for a lot of flexibility, I couldn’t edit it online from the consultation room, and I would have to convert it to PDF and email it, or just print it out – neither of which allow the student to really use it later. So I switched back to Google Docs. Still can’t share directly with the student via Drive, but I can have it open during the consultation so I and the student can take notes (the cool thing about the consultation room is that it has a big screen with two active keyboards and mice), and then I can just save it as a Word doc after the session.