IT Teaching Resources

Hosting a Zoom meeting or class: Best practices

GSE-IT shares Zoom best practices and how to schedule and host a meeting

Technology Use Case

Scheduling Meetings

  • For class: schedule the meeting from Canvas. (For security reasons, set a password and share it with your students)
  • Check/update your meeting settings
  • Add any Stanford-based alternative hosts (e.g., TAs).
  • Share the meeting invitation information (including the meeting link and telephone numbers) ahead of time.
  • Share the meeting agenda and relevant files ahead of time. (Make the session duration >90 mins.)
  • Set aside time to practice using desired features (e.g., manage participants, chat, screen sharing) within your meeting flow.

Before Meetings

  • Download the latest Zoom client/app
  • If planning to discuss/screen share a file during the meeting, use a device that has access to that file. 
  • Connect your device to a power source.
  • For more than 15 participants, designate a co-host to monitor chats and activities.
  • If possible, connect your computer directly to an internet port instead of Wi-Fi.
  • To the extent possible, find a quiet and well-lit place.
  • Close extraneous apps/programs.
  • Use headphones with a microphone.
  • Check-in 2-5 minutes early to test your audio, microphone, and video

During Meetings

  • For class sessions: start the meeting from Canvas.
  • For other meetings: log in and start the meeting from the desktop Zoom client. 
  • Plan time for a tech check and tech support: Share a back-up phone number for tech support. Take a moment to check the chat as well.
  • Encourage participants to share their video. If they are experiencing connection issues, then have them turn it off.
  • Look at your device’s camera often to provide eye contact.
  • Set/remind participants of meeting norms and expectations early on. A few suggested norms: Be mindful of your background (use a virtual background, if needed). Mute microphone when not speaking.
  • Introduce Zoom features you’ll be using at the beginning such as breakout rooms, polls, etc.
  • Use Zoom’s gallery view to see larger groups of participants.
  • Open the Manage Participants and Chat windows to monitor participant engagement. 
  • Suggest participants use the non-verbal feedback tools and chat to engage and signal.
  • When sharing a screen give participants a moment to open or process what you’ve shared.
  • If you experience a tech glitch, try to take it in stride while you troubleshoot. You may want to build in a break if you experience a tech glitch to give yourself some time to figure out the glitch.
  • Think about different devices connecting and how presentation and menus may display differently (phone, tablets, computers, etc.).
  • Build-in short breaks (5-10 mins every 50 mins). 
  • Try to talk slower than usual.
  • Overall, be flexible, adaptable, and understandable of different situations.
Boosting Engagement During Meetings
  • Consider using Zoom’s annotation or whiteboard tools to highlight or modify key ideas.
  • Consider using Zoom’s polls for group icebreakers or questions. 
  • Consider using Zoom’s breakout rooms for a partner or small group activities.

After Meetings

  • Share a link to meeting recording (if recorded in the cloud, the recording is under the host’s account).