A guide for writing instructions to students about Zoom teaching

In order for teaching with Zoom to work well, instructions are often needed for students on technical issues as well as common sense and  etiquette. Teachers may need to make agreements with students, which should be established at the beginning of the course, or when both teachers and students have felt for and can decide how they want it.

Below is a text template that can be edited and used by teacher for instructing students. The text is not suitable to be used as it is, as in sections about camera and communication require to enter the teacher's choice.

INSTRUCTIONS TO STUDENTS ABOUT ZOOM ON THIS COURSE

Download Zoom

Teaching with Zoom works best when everyone downloads the client, allowing also for the use of breakout rooms, which are used in group discussions, also work. The teacher/administrator make the division into groups. Link for download.

A link to Zoom teaching can be found at…. (Give students information on where to find links: Student Portal or Studium depending on what is used for the course. Sometimes the information is also emailed.)

Be on time

Log in at least a few minutes before the lesson/lecture starts so that the lesson can start on time. When you log in for the first time you may need even more time to accomodate.

If you arrive late or need to go earlier (for doctor's visits or similar), write message in the chat.

Attendance

Be prepared to participate in calls for attendance at the beginning and end of the teaching, especially during compulsory sessions.

Sound and video

Sit in a quiet environment and preferably use headphones / headsets.

Have the sound on "Mute" when you are not talking, the sound quality will be better for everyone. The setting can be found in the lower left corner of the Zoom window.

Normally have the camera off while teaching.

or

If possible, have the camera on when teaching. If you do not have video recording on your computer, you can use your mobile phone for video and computer to check slides etc. It is possible to be logged in twice, but only have sound on one device (to minimize the risk of sound feedback).

Communicate

It is more difficult than usual to spontaneously ask questions, comments and answer in Zoom, than in a physical room with many possibilities for subtle body language. At the same time, it is at least as important to communicate as in any other form of teaching. For communication to work well on this course:

Write in the chat if you have questions, answers or comments. You can write to anyone, or choose who you want to write to.

or

Use the participants feature. There you can raise your hand if you have questions, ask for it to go slower, or faster, answer yes or no to questions etc.

or

Turn on the camera and wave if you want to say something.

Provide feedback

Provide feedback on how Zoom teaching can be developed, and you will contribute to everyone's learning! It can be anything from reminding if it was a long time since you had a break or how the technology works, to suggestions on student-activating teaching.