Zoom – Best Practices

Zoom has quickly become a household name. The adoption of this platform has been welcomed, albeit forced. Zoom has allowed people to stay connected while adhering to social distancing mandates. It is a fairly user-friendly program but that does not mean that we haven’t all experienced some annoyances in the quick transition to virtual life. Here are some helpful tips to aid future interactions through Zoom:

  • Make sure you are up to date with the latest version of Zoom
    • Typically if an update is available, you will be automatically prompted to install it when the program is launched (or closed if using a Mac)
    • Updates need to be done manually
    • When scheduling a meeting as the host:
      • Send Zoom meeting links using RC communication tools and resources
      • Know your audience and be intentional when inviting your class to Zoom
      • Do not publically post Zoom links
      • Require a password in order to join the meeting
      • Turn Waiting room option on (this can be found under advanced settings)
      • Have microphones muted upon entry
      • Change your screen sharing settings before the call to prevent others from sharing without your (the host’s) permission

*Meeting settings may vary somewhat based on specific situational needs

Protecting your Meetings (How to avoid Zoombombing)

There have been instances of what’s being called Zoombombing taking place. Essentially this is unwanted participants joining a meeting and flooding the participants with unwanted visuals/sounds. Zoom has acknowledged this phenomenon (their response can be read here) and so has Roanoke College. Listed below are the security measures that are in place as well as additional suggestions for the host to secure the meeting:

  • Meetings are encrypted by default
  • Don’t use your Personal Meeting ID for the meeting. Instead, use a per-meeting ID, exclusive to a single meeting
  • Create Waiting Rooms for attendees
    • You can see who is attempting to join the meeting before allowing them access
  • Require host to be present before meeting starts
  • Expel a participant or all participants
    • Go to the Participants List in the navigation sidebar, and scroll down to More
    • Click Lock Meeting to stop further participants from entering the meeting and to be able to remove participants
  • Lock a meeting
  • Enable/disable a participant or all participants to record
  • Temporary pause screen-sharing when a new window is opened
  • Mute/unmute audio
  • Turn on/off video

 Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts can streamline your meetings and can help limit those awkward silences and frantic clicking when it is your turn to speak. Utilize the following keyboard shortcuts to be efficient in your Zoom meetings:

  • Mute or unmute audio: Alt + A
  • Start or stop video: Alt + V
  • Pause or resume screen sharing: Alt + S
  • Pause or resume screen recording: Alt + P
  • Switch camera: Alt + N
  • Raise or lower hand: Alt + Y
  • Mute and unmute your microphone quickly: press and hold spacebar when speaking.
  • Full list can be found here

*The shortcuts commands are listed for Windows PC users. Mac users will want to substitute the Apple or Command key for the Alt key above.