Using Zoom Breakout Sessions for Education and E-learning

With the pandemic keeping educational programs and schools online, teachers are turning to Zoom because of the company’s plan for educators.

The platform has removed their time limit for all teachers and schools using a free account. Zoom offers resources for a collaborative classroom online, learning tools, student engagement features, and more. 



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What is Zoom?

Zoom is a video communications platform that allows users to chat online through a cloud-based software. The platform is often used for teleconferencing, remote teams, social groups and distance learning. 

Zoom offers solutions for a wide-range of online environments: 

  • Chatrooms & collaboration

  • Webinars

  • Remote teams

  • Customer service support

  • Education/learning

  • Telehealth (health care and appointment online)

  • Social relations (talking to family and friends)

  • Trainings and workshops online 

  • Meetings

Using Zoom for education and online learning 

Most educators are turning to Zoom because of the amount of support and features they offer for a learning online. To get started, request to have your school registered and be added to receive unlimited time on the Basic plan (click to put in request)

Once your account is activated, you’ll have access to all the tools you need to teach online.

  • Resources for virtual classrooms

  • Hybrid classrooms support

  • Ability to record sessions and transcripts 

  • Integration options

  • Content sharing and interactive tools

  • Chatrooms and breakout sessions

  • Remote teaching hardware 

Learn more about how this educational training institute uses Zoom's breakout rooms throughout their online sessions (see video below). 

How to use Zoom video breakout rooms

First, let’s talk about why you might want to consider using these breakout sessions during your virtual class.

Breakout rooms are similar to small groups when learning in person. When in class, students are often asked to join small groups and discuss a lecture, work on a project or debate. If you have a large virtual classroom and you want participants to discuss with other classmates, breakout sessions can be a useful tool. 

How it works: 

Before the virtual class/course begins, hosts can assign breakout rooms under that meeting’s settings. By creating these groups in advance, it will populate names in the rooms before that session starts. You can potentially split your meeting up to 50 sessions with a maximum of 200 participants across the breakout rooms. 

Rooms can also be assigned during the event.

Participants can be assigned to a group automatically, manually, or select what breakout session they want to enter (depending on the settings). During this time, the host and co-host (assigned by the host) can hop between the different rooms to monitor the discussions.

Hosts can also broadcast a message out to all the groups during these individual sessions. When the host chooses to close the rooms, a one minute warning time to rejoin the main session will be sent to all groups. 

These rooms can be reopened again whenever they are needed and as often as the host would like. 

Note: prior to starting the Zoom meeting, users will need an invitation from the host to join, and the breakout room feature requires the desktop or mobile app. 

Click here for a walk through tutorial of how to set up your breakout session on Zoom. 

For more tips, check out the video below! See the entire interview here.


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