Virtual Community Rooms

Connecting to a meeting

Armed with a meeting invitation, you have everything you need to connect to a Zoom meeting hosted through Schlow Library. Let's take a look at the invitation and see what our options are.

In the example to the right, we see we can connect to the meeting in three ways. The first is to connect through the web, in either the zoom app that you have downloaded, or though a browser. The second option is useful if you are using your smart phone to connect. By tapping your choice of number, your phone will dial into the zoom and input your meeting information automatically. The third option to connect we see in the example is one where you dial into the zoom number of your choice and then enter in the meeting ID manually.

Connecting with the Zoom App

When connecting, it's important to note that you do not have to make an account with Zoom. You will be prompted to download the app, which will streamline the experience for you and is free. If you want to download the Zoom App make sure you only do it from their official site. (If Zoom's official page put you in the Google Play app store or the Apple app store thats ok. )

If you click on the link in the invitation, and launch it in the Zoom app, you will be presented with a series of options. Note that its generally easier to connect though your computer's audio, but if you have some trouble with your computer's speakers, you can call into the meeting for the audio. You can do this by selecting the Phone Call tab in the example.

You can also connect to the meeting by opening the Zoom app, clicking Join a Meeting and then entering in the meeting ID. Note that you don't have to Sign in.

Connecting through your Browser

If you would prefer to force the meeting to open in your browser without the app, you can. In the window that prompts you to open the meeting in, click Cancel, then click the Click Here link to re-prompt, and Cancel again. You will now see a link at the bottom of your browser to join from your browser, and you click that.

If you are early to the meeting you may be told that the meeting hasn't started yet. Give a moment to allow Schlow staff the time start the meeting. If you are waiting for a prolonged time, make sure you have clicked on the correct Zoom invitation.

Meeting Room Functions

Alright we are in our meeting, let's take a look around! If you connected though a phone call, your options will be very limited and straightforward. When we connect though the app or browser, there are six major points of interest that we will cover.

1) We have our Microphone options in the bottom-left of the screen. We can Mute and Unmute here, and the Space-bar is also the default push-to-talk key (although this only works when the Zoom app is focused, not when it is running in the background and you have other windows active). The chevron next to the microphone will give you different audio options, and is a good place to start if you have trouble with your microphone.

2) These are our Video options. Like the microphone, you can toggle your webcam on and off. If you have multiple video options to choose from, you will also see a chevron next to the video button you can access those through.

3) The Participant button toggles the right hand participant frame on and off, and gives you the current count of how many people are in the room. In the example we see the frame is toggled on.

4) The Screen Share button will share your desktop or window with the other participants.

5) The Chat button toggles the right hand chat frame. When chatting, you can select to chat with everyone or a select participant. In the example we see the frame is toggled on.

6) When you want to Leave the Meeting, click the button in the right hand side of the screen.

Scheduling a Meeting

The current available meeting start times are Weekdays, 9am-12pm and 4pm-7pm. Meetings are blocked out for maximum of 2 hours of time. Selecting a meeting time is as easy as 1, 2, 3!

1) On this page you will find the room request form and a calendar of available start times. Fill out the form with three choices of date and times for your meeting. Note that the first 15 minutes of your event will be you and Schlow staff working to get you familiar with the hosting of the Zoom room before they turn control of the room over to you. Take this set-up time into account when you are selecting your preferred start times. It also means we cannot accommodate requests that begin within 15 minutes of another event's start time, which is why we provided the calendar for you to reference (otherwise overlapping other events is fine).

2) After you submit your Zoom request, a Schlow staff member will contact you shortly to let you know what meeting time we could accommodate and pass along the meeting invitation that has all the details on how to connect to your meeting.

3) Take the meeting invite information you received from Schlow and disseminate it to your desired guests!

If you have any questions about this service, please contact us at .

Hosting a Meeting

At the time of your meeting, Schlow staff will start the meeting on your behalf. As a Host you connect to the meeting using the same connection invitation you disseminated to your group. When you log on, it is helpful if your screen name easily marks you as the Host, such as suing the name you used when you scheduled the meeting. Please arrive promptly, so Schlow staff can review the functions of the meeting room with you, and show you what you can do as Host. Schlow staff will then will pass Hosting duties to you or one of the the people you designated to operate on your behalf. When your questions are answered, Schlow staff will leave the meeting, and you can proceed on with it.

If you have some technical trouble that needs attention after staff have left, please contact

As a Host, you have all the options as a participant that are covered above. In addition you have the additional abilities, such as determining how participants share their screens, removing and muting participants, and more. If you record the session, select the option to record on your local computer. Zoom will compile it and you can download the complete session after a few minutes.

Screen Sharing: At the bottom of your screen you will see the green Share Screen button. When you press that button you will be prompted to select to share your whole desktop (what you see) or just a particular window. To stop sharing your screen, hit the red stop button at the top of your screen. In the chevron to the right of the Share Screen button, you have a choice of two toggles. The most secure option, Only the Host can share is depicted, but select the setting most appropriate for your needs.

If you do allow for sharing, we recommend designating the specific people you would like to share as Co-Hosts, and leaving the sharing default at Only the Host can share. This will disallow sharing by everyone but you and the Co-Hosts. See more on Co-Hosts below.

Once you start sharing your screen, you will also see some new options, in addition to Stop Share, such as Pause, and Annotations.

Co-Hosts: You may want to designate a Co-Host if you have a few other folks sharing their screen, want assistance with a large crowd, or otherwise have needs that would benefit from giving some extra authority to other people. Designating a Co-Host is easy enough, in the bottom toolbar of your Zoom window, hit the Participant's button to bring up the Participants window on the right hand side. Click the More chevron on the participant you want to elevate to Co-Host, and then select Make Co-Host. You can later rescind the Co-Host status through the same More chevron.

A Co-Host can share their screen even if the sharing options are set to Only the Host. They can remove people from the meeting, and if they connected with the Zoom app, they have access to the Security toggles.

Security: At the bottom of your screen the Security button brings up a host of toggles to quickly flip a switch if you want to change settings on the fly. Let's go through each one.

  • When Lock Meeting is checked, no more participants can enter, including those who are accidentally disconnected. Only use this ability when you are sure that everyone who you want to be in the meeting has already joined.

  • Enable Waiting Room sets up a virtual waiting room where participants gather until you manually allow them in. On the one hand this is potentially more secure, but only if you know the names of everyone you would like to attend, and you are certain that the names displayed will match the names you expect. The responsibility to admit participants manually is on the Host (and Co-Hosts).

  • The Share Screen toggle is the same setting as the toggle in the Screen Sharing button, changes made in one will be mirrored in the other.

  • Toggling Chat on and off mirrors the macro settings in the chat options. To make more detailed adjustments, open the chat window. This is accessed through the three dots, and then select who you would would like participants to be able to chat with.

  • By default, participants can Rename Themselves. If you want to disallow that, uncheck that option in the Security button.

  • Remove Participant is not a toggle, but clicking on it allows you to select a participant to boot. It is much faster however, to just select a guest in the Participants window, hit the More chevron and select Remove. You will be asked to confirm your choice. If you click Yes, the participant will be removed from the meeting and will not be able to re-join.

Besides Make Co-Host, and Remove, the Participants tab has some key functions. The most important of these may be to Mute guests by clicking on their microphones. This is a good place to start if you find that you have persistent audio feedback. The More button has a host of other functions you can use if necessary. Some options will only appear when relevant, such as Put in waiting room, or Stop Video. Once a host has stopped a video from a participant, that participant can't send their video to the meeting until the Host takes the action Ask to Start Video.

Invite: Hopefully all your guests arrived with the invite you previously sent out. If you need to invite on the fly, the button to that information is at the bottom of the Participants window.

Schlow Library is able to provide remote connection through Zoom because of generous support from the Centre Foundation and from community members like you. If you would like to contribute to Schlow Library's ongoing efforts to support and nurture our community, you can contribute here. Thank you!