Suppose you have to schedule meetings with all of your first-year advisees. The old-school way to do this is to tape a piece of paper to your door with all of your free times listed. The students come by and sign up for their desired slot. This works pretty well, but the downside is that the students still have to trek to your office to sign up.
What if these meetings are confidential (as I often face when I, as department chair, have to schedule individual meetings with a group of students to discuss some sensitive topic) and so this public option is not available? Scheduling by email can be a huge time sink.
I love Doodle, which is a great meeting scheduler. However, Doodle is usually used to find a single time when a large group of people can meet. I want to meet with each student at a unique time. A few weeks ago I discovered that Doodle can be used for this purpose.
To do so, follow these instructions:
- Start as if you are scheduling an event—enter the title, description, etc.
- Pick the days and times that you are available to meet.
- Instead of clicking “Finish,” click “PowerDoodle.”
- Under Visibility click “hidden poll” if you do not want anyone to see the names of the other participants.
- Under Number of OKs per participant (row) click “limited to 1” if you want each student to be able to sign up for only one time slot.
- Under Number of OKs per participant (column) click “limit” and enter 1 in the accompanying box. This will ensure that only one student can sign up for each time slot.
- Click “Finish.”