Monday, September 28, 2015

Appointment Slots in Google Calendar

Wouldn't it be great if you could send out, or publish a link that people could click, and be taken to a view of your calendar, where they could see available appointment slots, and all they had to do to make an appointment with you is click an available slot, and then the event appears on both your and their calendar? Welcome to Appointment Slots!

1. Important: Make sure you are in Week or Day view. Click into any date/time area on your Google Calendar, and a popup will appear:



(note the extremely cool camo pattern - that's a whole different blog post)

2. Click "Appointment slots" at the top of the popup, and then "Edit details" at the bottom:



3. This is where you will do all (and it's not much) of the heavy lifting:



4. Be sure to read the "How does this work?" section at the top, and/or the "Learn more about appointment slots" link on the right side. That may be all you need to do to get a grasp of building a good set of  Appointment Slots, but we will continue on here.

5. Make sure you put something into the "Title" field that will make sense to both you and your end user. For example, if you are setting up advising appointments with students, rather than "Appointment," consider "Advising Appointment."

6. You are likely using Appointment Slots in a repeating fashion. If so, click the "Repeat…" checkbox. I set this series of Appointment Slots to repeat weekly on Mondays and Wednesdays until the end of the term:



7. Indicate a meeting duration time.

8. Be sure to indicate a meeting location in the "Where" field.

9. Consider something like this in the "Description" field:

Bring your education plan, degree audit documents from DegreeRunner (if you have access) and/or any documents pertaining to your college course of study.

10. Right-click and copy the long, blue link:




That's what you can send to your students and/or place in your Moodle course and Instructor Website.

10. Click the red "SAVE" button in the upper left.

Here is what it looks like when I access another instructor's Appointment slots link:



Check out all of those appointment slots - I can seem them in context with my other appointments!

When a student clicks to reserve a time slot with you, here is what they will see:



Note that they can customize the details of the event after they save it. Here is how my example from above looks on my calendar:



Pretty nifty, huh? I think you've got enough to go on, so go ahead and tinker with your own Appointment Slots. And share your impressions and experience in the comments section below!

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