A new tool for collaboration and brainstorming
Miro is an online, collaborative whiteboard platform that can be used for:
There are a number of layout templates, or you can just have a blank canvas. Participants can draw, add text, sticky notes, images, links, etc. in real time. There are options for voting and using a timer. The boards can be exported in different formats for future use and reference. Note that there are other options for synchronous whiteboarding (MS Teams) and sticky notes (Padlet), which may offer a lower threshold for adoption and use.
If you're planning to use Miro in your teaching, it could support:
asynchronous activities, before or after a session, to help students prepare and make the most of synchronous sessions
project work, and presenting results by student teams
student participation in synchronous sessions.
Miro offers extensive functionality and it is well worth investing some time to become familiar with the functionalities, if you are planning to use it for ongoing collaborative activities throughout the term. You may find it useful to build in some practice time for both yourself and your students to become familiar with the tool and explore its various features.
All teaching staff and students at Oxford are eligible to apply for a free education licence. You may find that the functionalities offered by Miro can replace some of the multiple tools you are currently using. If you are not involved in teaching, you aren’t eligible for an education licence.
Getting started with Miro Lite
Anybody can try using the ‘lite’ version for free at http://miro.com/lite without having to sign up. This gives you a free board that will be live for 24 hours. You can use it to practise using Miro and or to share a quick link with others to work with you.
If you have a Miro account, you can then save the lite version into that for later reference. You can also export your work as a PDF file.
Note: Miro Lite does not have the full set of Miro functionality. If you want to try everything Miro offers, you need to set up your free education account.
Lack of accessibility
It is worth noting that Miro is completely inaccessible to anybody using a screen reader and has very limited keyboard navigation options for those who require that as their main mode of interaction with the computer. However, given that a tutor will know ahead of time which of their students have those needs, they should be able to use the tools effectively in cases where it would not exclude anyone.
Using Miro for language teaching
Miro can be very useful for certain kinds of teaching (eg language learning), and as a permanent record of one-on-one tutorial meetings (eg a sort of infinite Miro board for each student). The following two videos show a teacher preparing Miro boards and games for language learning, which might be adapted for activities or demonstrations in other subjects:
Undergraduate Admissions at Oxford
Using Miro for interviews: How to sign up for a free Miro account (students)
Undergraduate Admissions: Using writing tools in Miro
Miro training and support materials
IT Services: Miro help page and how to apply for the free education licence
A Getting started with Miro video
The Miro Academy: a variety of training courses to get you up and running
Miro Help Center: an online knowledge base of useful questions and answers
Miro Community: an online forum