A webinar is a web‐based seminar organized in many different ways. It could be a lecture including comments and discussions, or a workshop, or an information session:
- During a webinar each participant participates through his/her computer or device. Implying that people can participate intimately in the same event at the same time but be physically at different and remote locations.
- A key feature of a webinar is interaction. The interaction can be in many directions: presenter-participants, participant/s – presenter or participant-participant.
- A webinar can include speeches, presentations, chat, discussions, polls and other communicative and collaboarative features.
- A webinar differs from a webcast by being a two-way event.
- A webinar can be a stand-alone session or part of a combination or blend of maytn types of work such as individual work, physical meetings/seminars or other learning activities.
- The ability to share, discuss and give feedback between the presenter and the participants makes the webinar a suitable tool for learning activities.
- A webinar is well adapted to the basic characteristics of the internet: It is short, quick, fragmented and supports networking. A webinar is suitable for working across borders with delimited thematic issues. It works as a place for professional reflection and networking with rich access to sharing knowledge.
Given today’s challenges with limited time to travel and limited resources for professional development and training, webinars can be a very good addition to an organisation´s or companies toolbox. To arrange this kind of online events can thus be seen as a contribution to a more sustainable life, reducing our ecological footprint.
A webinar is cost efficient, it is usually free to join and requires little equipment. In addition, the webinar can be recorded and thus made accessible to people who were not able to participate in real-time.
The person or organisation offering the webinar, however, needs to choose and even invest in access to such services, see for example:
- A Wikipedia list of web conferencing services
- A Wikipedia article on web conferencing
- 15 examples of web-conferencing software