Some Bethel University sessions are offered on Zoom, a free app for videoconferencing. Use the links, resources, and tips below to learn how to connect to Zoom and use the platform to take or teach a Bethel University class.
You can quickly join a BU Zoom session anonymously and in any web browser by clicking the event link that we will send to you. We recommend installing an app and creating a free account for the best experience.
Quick Links for Zoom Support
Downloading & Using Zoom
Step-by-Step Guide to a Zoom Meeting (Seniors’ Guide)
Troubleshooting Video Calls
Five top tips for joining a BU session on Zoom
Ready to join a Zoom class or meet-up at Bethel University? Read below for how to get prepared, learn Zoom, and connect. If you want to join, but don’t have a device or a strong Internet connection, please reach out to us or contact a local library to help. Bethel Public Library and many Vermont libraries loan iPads, have computers onsite, and welcome users to connect to the Internet from the Library.
1. Download and update your Zoom app, and create a free account.
You don’t need the app or an account to join, but you will likely have a better experience if you do. You just need a computer or mobile device and an Internet connection. If you have a computer, we suggest using it for Zoom (you’ll appreciate the larger screen and keyboard). Tablets and cell phones work fine too. Once you have a Zoom account, you can log in on multiple devices.
- Download and install Zoom on a computer. Visit the Zoom Download Center. Look for the heading “Zoom Desktop Client” and follow the instructions to install it on your Mac or PC.
- Download and install Zoom on a mobile device. Visit the App Store on your device and search for “Zoom.” Follow the instructions to install the app and create an account.
- Check for updates. If you already have the app, take a moment to check for updates and install the latest version before your BU session.
2. Test out the Zoom app and try a tutorial.
Once your app is set up, you can try Zoom out and get comfortable with how it works.
- Watch free Zoom tutorials or use the resources above to learn the basics.
- Try a Zoom meeting. Open the Zoom app on your computer, phone or tablet. Click “New Meeting” to start a Zoom session. You will be the only participant. You can explore and test the buttons and functions, see what a Zoom meeting looks like, and play around.
- Join a Zoom test meeting. Ask a friend, family member, or neighbor to try a Zoom meeting with you. Have someone send you an invitation link and test out joining. You can also join a test meeting through Zoom.
3. Check your Internet connection, microphone and speakers, and camera before your session starts.
Be sure that your setup is working well before your BU class begins.
- Check your Internet connection. You will need high-speed Internet (broadband, fiber, or a good cellular signal) to connect successfully. If your connection is not strong enough, consider joining from a Library or other public space.
- Go to google.com and search for “Internet Speed Test.” Click “Run Test.”
- You will need speeds of 2.0-4.0 Mbps in upload and download speeds for a successful Zoom session.
- Check your speakers, microphone, and camera. You will need working speakers in order to hear the class. You will need a working microphone and video camera for others to see and hear you. If you don’t have a camera or microphone, you can still participate via chat (typing responses).
4. Charge your battery, restart your device, find your Zoom info, and join early.
Start getting ready for your session 15-30 minutes early. Join the meeting early to be sure you can connect.
- Charge up and have a power cord ready. Be sure your device is charged or plugged in, or you have a charger and an outlet nearby.
- Restart your device and close apps. Your computer, phone or tablet may run better during the Zoom call if you restart shortly before. If you don’t reboot, then at least close all programs, web browsers, and applications that you don’t need.
- Get settled and join your session early. Find your event Zoom link and join the session 10-15 minutes early to be sure everything works. The BU host will not open the session room until shortly before the start time, but you can test your audio and video and be sure you are connecting correctly.
- Find your event info or link. You should receive an automated email through Eventbrite with a link to the Online Event Page. If you can’t find it, you can also login to Eventbrite and find your session info there (login in a browser or download the free app).
- Click “Open in Zoom” to join the event. This option will appear 30 minutes before your BU session starts.
- A new page will open in your web browser, and you may see a pop-up box that asks where you want to open zoom.us. Click “open zoom.us” if so.
- If nothing pops up, click “Launch Meeting.”
- Click “Join with Computer Audio” if you have audio enabled. If not, click “Phone Call” at the top of the window to dial in. Test your speaker and microphone if needed.
- Wait for the BU host to start the meeting or admit you. This will happen close to the session start time. You will join the BU session in your desktop or mobile app (if you have it downloaded) or in a web browser (if you don’t have the app).
5. Have a backup plan and troubleshoot as needed.
Anytime there’s technology involved, things can go wrong. Be ready to adjust your plans if needed.
- Have a backup device. If possible, have a second device available in case yours isn’t working properly.
- Have a backup location. If your Internet goes down and you can’t connect from home, think about a backup location like a library, public space, coffee shop, or friend’s home.
- Be ready to adjust. If you have trouble joining at first, try restarting and connecting again. If your connection is choppy or not working, try turning off your video. Review the troubleshooting links above for more help.