Teaching, Learning, Working Remotely - Getting online and optimizing connection
This document is to help you optimize your online and network connection experience while teaching, learning and working remotely.
If you are able to access the internet at home:
1. Test your network speed.
- Check your network speed. Before you use a collaboration tool, you’ll want a least 5Mbps to use Zoom and other collaboration tools.
2. What to do if my connection is slow?
- Move closer to your Wi-Fi router. Working closer to your router for best signal strength. Adding Wi-Fi extenders can boost the signal to other rooms.
- Do not connect to Rice VPN unless you’re using a service that needs it. Banner, Edgar, Cisco VoIP, Rice Marketplace.
- Restart your router and/or computer. Most routers have a reset button. If you computer isn’t connecting but other devices are still working online, reboot your computer.
- Close other programs and limit streaming/large downloads while you work. Other programs on your computer may consume processor or network resources. Disconnect or limit use of non-essential devices on your network.
- Check your internet service provider status website to determine if there are any known issues. This will help determine if this issue is widespread in the area or specific to your home.
- Use a mobile hotspot. A hotspot is a blend of software, hardware and network data services that combine to transform a phone into the equivalent of a broadband modem and router. Check with your mobile phone provider to see if a hotspot is an option for you.
3. Resources for your home internet equipment
Network articles from Wirecutter
- The Gear to Get for Reliable Wi-Fi in Any Home
- The Best Wi-Fi Extender and Signal Booster
- How to Make Your Wi-Fi Suck Less While Working From Home
- The Best Wi-Fi Hotspot
- Moving to the Woods Killed My Internet. Here's What I Did About It.
- Best Wi-Fi routers for 2020
If you don’t have access to the internet at home:
Access free or discounted internet / data during COVID-19 period.
Several internet and telecom service providers have pledged to offer free access to the internet or increased data allowances to ensure people can get online during this unprecedented time.
- The FCC’s “Keep America Connected” initiative pledges to suspend common penalties and expand internet access [US]
- Xfinity [US]
- Spectrum / Charter [US]
- AT&T [US]
- Verizon [US]
- T-Mobile [US]