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UNF professor using gaming site to help students

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A University of North Florida Chemistry professor is tapping into the trend of online gaming. He's making himself available to students on a popular streaming platform for gamers -- called "Twitch."

Professor Josh Melko has been using 'Twitch' for office hours for more than a year and he says the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

"Students can change the lights in this room through the chat dialogue they can place out and they can request songs so anything during office hours that gets them involved and engaged is beneficial and will keep them coming back," Melko said.

Melko said he wants his students to come in person during office hours, but the reality is some are intimidated or don't have the time.

"It's a way to get that one on one interaction, but they can also go back and re-listened to what I said later, so they can refresh their memory," Melko said.

Twitch is a live streaming site, typically used to stream online games like Fortnite and League of Legends to millions of viewers, but Melko says it can also be used to reach students one on one.

Melko says during his live stream, students can ask about specific homework questions or it could be broader, for example, what should I do with my career. 

Chemistry is a rigorous course and for Melko, it's about meeting his students halfway.

"They're always on the computer or phone, so why not try to meet them where they live or where they are comfortable," Melko said.

Professor Melko has more than 1,600 followers and his videos have been viewed more than 50 thousand times. 

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