Tips for Leading a Class in Zoom


  • VERY IMPORTANT: Only go to Zoom class meeting links at the time of your class. Since we are using central Mailman Pro Host accounts to schedule multiple meetings, you could cause another class meeting to be stopped.

  • To join your remote live class, go to the Zoom meeting link provided by your department. This link will remain the same throughout the semester, so please bookmark it in your browser.  

  • Choose an appropriate quiet space to lead class where you will not be disturbed 

  • Choose optimal internet connection, lighting, and background if you will use video: 

  • Recording your session: 

    • Pro tip: Post a sticky note reminder to Record your session on your desktop. It’s easy to forget.:  

    • Local recordings will be stored to your device under in a Zoom folder found in the following file path:

      • PC: C:\Users\User Name\Documents\Zoom

      • Mac:/Users/User Name/Documents/Zoom

    • The recording will be available after your session has ended. 

    • These files can then be uploaded to your CourseWorks site.  



Set Expectations

  • As the instructor, take a moment at the beginning of the session to set expectations about the use of mics, cameras and chat sessions.

  • Mics: Remind all participants to keep their mics on mute unless they are speaking to the class.

  • Cameras: You take the lead on whether or not to use video yourself and whether to invite your students to use video.

    • For classes over 25-30 students, it becomes impractical for everyone to have their video on during the entire class. Yet, it is good practice to conduct “fishbowl discussions” and ask a few students at a time to turn on their cameras for short discussions. Even in large classes, when not sharing your screen, consider using your own video to increase your social presence in the classroom.

  • Chat: Invite students to actively use chat so they have a voice in the live session when their mics are not on. Chat can be a great way to make lectures interactive during a live session.

    • Anything posted in Chat before someone joins the class is not visible to them. If you post announcements, contact information, links or resources in the Chat, ask students to repost in the Chat for their peers if students join later.

    • If you are part of an instructional team, designate someone to monitor chat and answer questions in Chat or pipe up to bring those questions to your attention. Let students know who the monitor is.

      • Monitors: Remember to identify the person you are responding to when participating in live chat sessions.

    • If you are on your own, let students know that you are not able to monitor every Chat response or that you will stop periodically to review chat. You can invite them to turn on their mics and pipe up if they have a question as well.

    • If idle chatter or joking around in the chat area will distract you, let students know ahead of time. The chat area can become pretty lively sometimes and instructor reactions to this vary widely.


  • You can share your screen during class to present:

  • If you choose to share Desktop, be mindful that everyone can see what is on it.

  • If you decide to share specific content using the share menu rather than your entire desktop, keep this in mind:

    • What you want to share has to be open on your computer first – not minimized – or it will not show up in the share menu as a choice


  • You can create breakout rooms in Zoom so students can have small group discussions.

  • If a student arrives late to the session once breakout groups are already in session, they won’t receive the same invitation that other students get when the rooms are opened. Instead, they’ll have an extra button added to the toolbar at the base of their screen for breakouts – once you’ve sorted them into a group they can click this to have an option to join the room.


  • The first step to troubleshooting any IT problem applies here too: Turn it off and turn it back on again. If you are experiencing any kind of technical issue, and it’s not related to your internet connection, more often than not leaving the meeting, closing your browser, and rejoining the meeting will fix it.

  • If you are having trouble hearing or seeing what is happening in the meeting:

    • First check the status of audio and video on your own hardware (Play a YouTube video to see if you can hear it or not). 

    • If it is only Zoom audio or video that is not working:

      • You may not have joined Zoom audio. Go to your audio settings in the bottom left-hand corner of the meeting toolbar. Join audio here.

      • You may have selected the wrong audio. Go to your audio settings in the bottom left-hand corner of the meeting toolbar. Click on the arrow (^) next to the mute/unmute option on the Zoom toolbar. From there you can select which microphone or speaker Zoom will use for audio. 

      • The same solution works for video issues. Click on the arrow next to the start/stop video button.

    • If the issue seems to be with your Wifi internet connection

      • Move closer to your Wifi router.

      • Shut down any other programs currently running on your computer if you can, particularly any browsers that may be streaming content.

  • Call-in information for Zoom meetings is always available in the meeting option Join Audio:

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