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Preparing to Zoom

Posted on: March 13, 2020

 
I will be facilitating a synchronous online portion of a class next Saturday. We will be using Zoom.

I am recycling some tips I have for video conferencing. I have added to my list following this excellent piece from Beth Kanter.

  1. Use headphones/earphones, preferably with a built-in microphone. This will prevent the audio feedback that creates echoes during the session.
  2. Mute your microphone (via Zoom software) when you are not using it. This prevents audio leaks which might interrupt the session.
  3. Use the texting tool as a communication backup.
  4. Choose a quiet place with strong and reliable Internet connection. Refrain from relying on a library or coffee shop.
  5. Set the physical space up so that you are not interrupted. It might help to create a sign for the door to inform other occupants of a shared space. Make your physical space comfortable for a few hours.
  6. Be camera ready if you are to appear video. You might be at home, but you are still attending a class in a social setting.
  7. Do not multitask. Stay on task whether it is asynchronous or synchronous. Use the suggested time-on-task in the instructions to guide your effort.

As I have the benefit of meeting the class in person this week, I intend to dedicate about an hour of our session to prepare for the Zoom-enabled class. We will:

  1. Download the Zoom client.
  2. Install the Zoom client.
  3. Join the Test Session.
  4. Use reactions* (e.g., thumbs up).
  5. Test the text chat.
  6. Set up your video* camera and audio.
  7. Test the breakout rooms (small groups) and screen sharing.

*Note: Might be disabled by the institute’s IT administrator

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