ONLINE MEDIATOR CERTIFICATION TRAINING: The Florida Supreme Court now allows online mediation certification training.  In order to best provide a meaningful educational experience, My Florida Mediator, offers the the following guidance for online course faculty.

1.SYNCHRONOUS INSTRUCTION: Online courses will be offered in a synchronous fashion, meaning that courses will be taught live, and course faculty will need to attend the course at the faculty scheduled times.

 Course faculty  need to log in using a computer or tablet with reliable high-speed internet connection.  Use of a smart phone is not adequate as the screen is too small to view course attendees during lectures or roleplay activities.  Hardware enabled audio and video connectivity is essential.

3. AUDIO AND VIDEO PARTICIPATION: Cameras must be turned on throughout the course, and course faculty need to be visible throughout the course.  If purchasing a new camera, be sure to install your camera in advance of the course.  If you have problems getting your camera to work with Zoom, you may need to uninstall Zoom and then re-install Zoom after connecting your camera. 

 Course faculty should arrange to participate from a private space in their home or office free from interruptions or extraneous noise.  While some may have children or pets at home or work who may interrupt once or twice during the course, constant interruptions will make teaching more challenging and may be disruptive to the course itself.

5. ZOOM INSTRUCTION: If needed, there will be a Zoom meeting scheduled before the course starts to allow faculty to make sure they can properly connect and teach.  This will be a chance to check that all of our computers/tablets, cameras and microphones work as well as teach a few basics about Zoom course instruction.  We will not be able to accommodate Zoom connectivity problems during class time.

6. ZOOM INVITATIONS: You do not need to have a Zoom account to teach in the course.  You will be sent a link and will be able to click the link to join the class.  If you haven’t already done so, you will need to download Zoom software to your computer or tablet which can be found at www.zoom.us, and this software is free.  Please be sure to update your Zoom software within one month of the start of the course as outdated Zoom software may not work properly. While not necessary for teaching in the course, you can also sign up for a free limited Zoom account and practice using Zoom before the course starts. 

7. FAMILIARITY WITH ZOOM: If you haven’t used Zoom before, you are encouraged to watch some of the free Zoom tutorials which can be found online.  Since most mediations now are being conducted online via Zoom or similar software, learning how to use Zoom will be useful for mediating during the active phase of this pandemic.

8. ZOOM LOG IN: Kindly log into Zoom at least 15 minutes before you are scheduled to teach to be sure Zoom loads and appears properly.  Use the log-in information My Florida Mediator provides for each day. When you log in, you may be placed in a waiting room.  If this occurs, the Zoom host will admit you to the main session prior to the start of the course.  If you are having technical difficulties, call the Zoom manager or primary trainer for assistance.

 9. COURSE PARTICIPATION:  Each day, please verify the microphone and video icons in the lower left corner of the toolbar at the bottom of the screen are turned on. When not speaking, please mute your microphone so that any background noise will not disturb the class.  

​10. SMART PHONE BACKUP: Kindly keep a phone handy in case you have technical difficulties, and the Zoom host needs to reach you either by telephone or email.  

11. PRESENTERS: You will be able to share your screen and enable course participants to see your PowerPoint or other presentation.  If you prefer, you can request that the Zoom manager share your presentation on her screen.  If you share your screen on your own computer, you will have more flexibility to move to different presentation slides or other materials than if you ask the Zoom manager to share her screen.

12. FACULTY CRITIQUERS: You and your roleplay participants will be assigned to a breakout room by the Zoom manager.  Please verify that the course attendees are correctly assigned to your group and get the email address for the roleplay mediator you are observing.  If you discover someone is in the wrong roleplay group, please contact the Zoom manager or primary trainer for assistance. 

Prior to beginning the mediation roleplay, verify you have the correct email address for the roleplay mediator and encourage the parties and attorneys to exchange telephone numbers so they can talk when not participating in a mediation caucus.  When some roleplay mediation participants are excluded from a caucus, please ask those not participating in the caucus to 1) mute their microphone, 2) turn off their computer volume and so they can't hear what is being said and 3) to remain visible on their camera at all times.  Please ask the excluded parties to continue to watch the mediation roleplay so they know when to turn their volume and camera back on either because the mediator wants to caucus with them or to bring all parties back to the large group.  At the end of the roleplay, please email your completed and signed roleplay evaluation to the roleplay mediator and copy the primary trainer. 

13.  STAY UP TO DATE:  Please check this webpage from time to time to see if information has been added or revised.