Considerations when attending classes or meetings remotely
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Before the meeting
- Note your audio quality: Test your microphone and speakers. When possible, try to attend meetings in quiet, indoor locations to control ambient noise. If you're unable to attend from a quiet location, mute your microphone before joining the meeting. You will be able to unmute when you need to speak unless the meeting host has chosen to mute all attendees.
- Note your video quality: If you will be using video, test your video quality. Try not to sit directly in front of or beside a bright light source. Experiment with moving lamps and your camera until you can see your brightly-lit face on the screen. Covering a bright window may help.
- Be aware of your environment: Be aware of your environment, especially the area behind you. You may wish to enable a virtual background when attending meetings.
- Adjust your bandwidth and signal: If you're on a wireless connection, try to remain close to the wireless router and consider installing a signal booster in areas of low signal strength. When you have the option, choose wired (instead of wireless) for video conferencing.
- Practice using Zoom: Join a test meeting or make video appointments with classmates, friends, or family to get used to Zoom. Practice scheduling and inviting people to meetings. Learn how to mute and unmute yourself and how to turn your video on and off.
During the meeting
- Mute your microphone when you aren't talking: Zoom has a option that cuts down on ambient feedback for others in the meeting. You won't want to mute yourself when there is back-and-forth discussion, but you should do so when listening to a presenter.
- Say your name: When speaking, say your name so that you can be easily identified (for example, “This is [your name], and I have a question). This also helps individuals who cannot access video (for example, those joining via phone).
- Turn off your video if the connection quality is low: If your connection quality is low (your video is freezing, or your audio is skipping), turn off your video. Connecting with audio only will help to preserve your connection quality.
Turning off your video will also help others' connections. If attendees are unable to view or hear the meeting presenter, other participants may need to turn off their video.
- Share carefully: To avoid unintentionally sharing private content (email, new message notifications, etc.), do not share your entire desktop when sharing your screen. Instead, open up any relevant documents before the call and share only those during the meeting. Note that when you share, Zoom prioritizes the shared item to the bandwidth. This can reduce the quality of others' video feeds, so don't share longer than necessary.
- Be aware of your environment: When you share your video, remember that everyone can see you and everything behind you. If you need to step away for a moment, consider notifying others via chat, and then turning off your camera momentarily.
More help and advice
For additional advice and help using Zoom, see Improve and troubleshoot your Zoom experience.
This content has been adapted from Video Conference Etiquette on the Zoom Blog, and 13 etiquette tips for video conference calls on TechRepublic.