When assessing your decisions to create video content for remote teaching, the first choice you will make is what needs to be synchronous and what can be asynchronous. You likely will choose both for different purposes.


When choosing synchronous meeting time for your classes, be sure to only expect that synchronous time to happen during your regularly scheduled class time. Due to potential internet instability and bandwidth considerations, choose synchronous time sparingly. You might consider choosing synchronous time with students in smaller groups. If you have a class of 30 students, for example, you could break up your class into 15 minute chunks to meet with 10 students at a time to make interaction easier. Record synchronous sessions using Google Hangout or Zoom so those students unable to join at that exact moment can watch later. Please don’t penalize students for an inability to join synchronously.


For synchronous gatherings you have a few very solid options. We recommend Zoom, Canvas Conference, or Google Hangouts. Here are some points of interest for each:



  • To create a meeting with your Canvas course, go to “Settings” and then “Navigation.” Find Zoom at the bottom of the list, drag it to the top of the list of options, and click save. Next, click on “Zoom” in the menu on the left of the screen. (You may need to then click “authorize” if it pops up.) 
  • If you get an error message, this simply means you’re a new user. Go to http://acuonline.zoom.us and click to start a meeting. You will be prompted to enter your ACU single sign-on information, and this will register you with Zoom. This should fix the error message when you try to open Zoom in your Canvas course.
  • Then click “Schedule a New Meeting.” Once you do this, a window will open allowing you to set the meeting details. Here are some recommendations for meeting settings: 
    • Do not require Registration. (This is a way for Zoom to get contact information from students.)
    • For Video, turn “on” Host and Participant video. (This will allow everyone to see one another in the meeting.)
    • For Audio, choose “Both” telephone and computer audio. (This will allow students with slower internet connections to join the meeting over the phone.)
    • We recommend removing the Password requirement.
    • Check the box to Record the meeting automatically so that you will have a video of the meeting that you can share with students who were unable to attend. 
  • With a standard account, the limit for a Zoom session is 40 minutes. If you need a longer session time, contact Educational Technology (Marisa Beard).
  • Scheduling the Zoom gathering via Canvas will add the meeting to your Canvas calendar, but we still recommend notifying students about the meeting through other channels (email, course announcements, etc.)
  • If a student hasn’t previously used Zoom on their laptop, they will likely need to enable their mic and speaker and restart the meeting the first time they join. After they give permissions once, it will work seamlessly for future meetings. So, you might recommend students trying to connect ten minutes before the first meeting. That will allow them time to work through these start-up tasks before the meeting begins. 
  • If students plan to join the meeting with a mobile device (phone or tablet), we recommend that they use the Zoom app available in the app store for their device. This will simplify the process for joining a meeting on a mobile device. 
  • Each Zoom meeting has its own URL. If a student is struggling to join the meeting through Canvas, simply share the URL.
  • If hosting a guest speaker, share the URL with them and the guest will be able join your Zoom meeting.
  • At the end of the meeting, end the session. You will be prompted to specify where you want the video to be saved (your desktop is a great option).
  • You can then upload the video to your Studio library in Canvas for use in your course(s).


Google Hangouts Meet

  • Google Hangouts can be easily created using either your Google Calendar or your Canvas course. 
  • For instructions to create a Google Hangouts Meeting within a Canvas course, see the Canvas tutorial here
  • To add a Google Hangouts Meeting using your Google Calendar, simply create a calendar event, add students as guests, click the “Add conferencing” dropdown box, and select “Hangouts Meet.” 
    • Google automatically creates a Hangouts Meeting for that calendar event with its own unique URL. When you save the calendar event, you can choose to send an invitation to guests. Sending the invitation will allow students to add the calendar event to their own calendars. Then, students can join the meeting by clicking on the link in the calendar event description. 
    • Alternatively, you can send them the URL for that meeting in another form of communication (such as an email or Canvas announcement). Students will be brought into the meeting when they click the link. 
  • Google Hangouts Meetings allow you to record the meeting and share your screen, just as you can do in Zoom video conferences. 
  • If students are using Google Hangouts on their phone, ask them to add the app for easier use.

This is also an efficient way to facilitate online office hours. See our video tutorial here.

Thanks to the Innovation Foundry for the Zoom Cheat Sheet, too!

zoom cheat sheet