Using best practices for Zoom Hosts


This article provides some best practices for Zoom hosts. See also this Zoom video on understanding Zoom meeting controls.

Note: Please see Keeping out unwanted Zoom participants for advice on how to handle "zoombombing."

Getting Started

  • Review the System Requirements section of the Zoom Support Page
  • Be sure you have a robust internet connection. A fast LAN connection or excellent Wi-Fi signal strength are key. Avoid public internet Wi-Fi hotspots. This is very important for all participants in a session that will be using the Share Screen tool
  • Practice! Create a meeting and practice by engaging your Audio and Video (webcam) devices. Use the Share Screen tool in the practice meeting and record your meeting. In the MP4 recording, ensure that your audio is recorded and plays back with optimal clarity and volume.

Audio and Video

  • A USB headset with microphone is best for sound quality.
  • Before attending an online meeting, verify that the sound works properly on your computer. You may test the sound device on the computer by playing a media file.
  • Once you enter a live session, verify your Audio. The Audio Options icon is available on the toolbar near the microphone icon. Keep in mind that your computer may have more than one sound device.
    • If you plan to use a headset (recommended), select this device in Audio Options.
    • If you are not using a USB headset, you may need to select other options from the devices list to confirm the sound settings for your computer. The Audio Options window provides an opportunity to test the selected device.
  • If you need to broadcast video, use a good quality webcam and ensure lighting is adequate.
  • If you hear an echo in the online meeting, ask Participants to use headsets or to disengage external speakers. Meeting hosts may quickly mute all Participants on the Manage Participants screen, and then troubleshoot the audio as needed.

Breakout Rooms

  • Set room permissions and tool availability before sending Participants to Breakout Rooms. Remember, the Breakout Rooms will inherit the latest tool permissions set in the Main Room.
  • Before engaging the Breakout Rooms, prepare students for the tasks they will need to accomplish in the sessions. For example, should the group leader save the Whiteboard before the Breakout Room ends?
  • Meeting hosts may join any Breakout Room in progress.
  • Breakout Rooms can be created based on poll results from participants.

Online Communication Tools

  • In the beginning of class, define how you’d like for Participants to use the Audio, Video (webcam) and online Chat. Prompt Participants to raise their hands to indicate that they have a question or to respond to a verbal question.
  • Take a few moments to review the communication expectations for students. For example, is the Chat tool available for ongoing question and answer?
  • Greet students via Audio (microphone) and Chat tools.

Meeting Permissions

  • As you enter the meeting, some tools may already be available to participants, such as the Audio, Video and Chat tools.
  • Meeting hosts may access the Manage Participants icon on the meeting toolbar to change permissions in the meeting in real time.
  • Permissions may be changed and applied to the entire room, such as Mute All Participants, or the leader may mute one, or several, participants.
  • Meeting hosts may also Lock the Share Screen tool on the Manage Participants menu and allow participants to record the meeting.

Share Screen

  • Have the best Internet connection possible for Share Screen activities. This is important for conducting Share Screen and engaging the Video tool as well.
  • If sharing a media file, be aware of two options on the Share Screen Options on the bottom-left. You may wish to select “Share Computer Sound.” This will broadcast the sound through the meeting room.
  • Participants have varying signal strength, so content may stream faster for some and slower for others. Periodically check with meeting participants when sharing larger content items and verify what is displaying on their screen.

Modified on: Tue, Oct 31, 2023 at 8:06 AM

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