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What is Zoom?

Zoom is a web-conferencing solution that provides both video conferencing and screen-sharing capabilities. Its high-quality and easy to use format has made it a great solution for Swarthmore College's web-based video and audio conferencing services.

All Swarthmore faculty, staff, and students have a basic Zoom account for video web-conferencing— just go to Sign in with your Swarthmore College username and password. You can use Zoom to have an audio or video chat with anybody else and you can have up to 100 people in a meeting simultaneously. The only limitation to a basic account is that you’re limited to 40 minutes per call. To hold a meeting longer than 40 minutes please contact Media Services so they can set you up with a Pro account for unlimited minutes.

What You Need To Get Started

  • An internet-connected computer, laptop, or mobile device
  • A webcam, USB computer microphone, headset or earphones (if you’re participating with a laptop)
  • A phone (if you’re unable to receive audio via your computer, laptop, or device)

*If you do not have any of the above-listed equipment Media Services can provide them for you.

Getting started with Zoom:

  1. Go to from your computer or mobile device.
  2. Click “Sign In
  3. You will be prompted to type in your Swarthmore username and ID.
  4. After logging in, you will see your “My Meetings” page where you can schedule and start meetings/ video web- conference calls.
  5. On the “My Meetings” page you can create scheduled meetings by clicking “Schedule a Meeting” at the top right.
  6. After clicking “Schedule a Meeting”, you will be prompted to fill out information regarding the details of your meeting including topic, date, and time. For most calls you want to leave Host and Participants video “On” and select “Both” Telephony and VoIP for Audio Options.
  7. Once you’ve filled out all the information, click the “Schedule” button at the bottom of the page.
  8. Once you click “Schedule” all your information will be saved. You will now see a link to the "Join URL". That is the link you will give your participants in order for them to join your meeting.
  9. You can copy and paste the given link into an email or you can click “Copy Invitation” just below and get a prompt created by Zoom with a pre-made script to email out to your participants. It includes both the URL web link for them to join the meeting and a Toll phone number for them to use if they are unable or choose not to use a computer.
  10. When you are ready to start your web conference meeting, log back in and click “Start” on the designated meeting you created. Make sure the Meeting ID matches the URL link for the meeting information you sent out to your participants.
  11. If you haven't already previously downloaded the Zoom app it will automatically download once you start or join a meeting. You can also download it manually. At the bottom of the page and click on Download Zoom Client 
  12. Follow the instructions to download and install.

*Remember that anyone you invite into a Zoom meeting does not need to have a Zoom account, they can just attend the meeting with the link you have given them.