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In-class equipment - Audio / Zoom - Recommendations

Recommendations for Spring 2021:

Our basic recommendation is that you do not use the in-class equipment.  Instead, conduct any class that has students who are attending via Zoom as if everyone was attending remotely (via "ASU Sync").  Have each student who is attending class in-person bring a laptop and headphones; and teach the class from your own laptop (with headphones).  Note that headphones are important for reducing echoes and other audio issues.  Also, a wired internet connection (i.e. an ethernet cable) is highly recommended for stability of your connection.

If you have a special setup in mind or any other questions, please reach out to us at silcis@asu.edu. We would be glad to walk through any scenario with you, to help find the best outcome for both you and your students.

If you would like to use the in-class equipment: We highly recommend that you ask for a "Type A" classroom.  This allows all In-person participants to speak freely with the remote participants.  For help and training on the equipment, visit https://provost.asu.edu/sync/faculty.  Scroll down the page a bit and you will find one-on-one and group training/orientation sessions.  Note that your students can go through the training as well, if that is helpful in your situation.

 


 

 

Type B and C Zoom equipment -  A better audio experience 
(for ASU Sync / In-Person classes)

 

The Issues:

  • The Type B and C setups only have a single microphone, and it is meant to capture only one voice.
  • The in-class participants need to be heard by the remote participants.
  • Because of Covid-19, the in-class students shouldn’t be passing around a microphone.
  • The remote participants need to be heard in the classroom.
  • Audio echoes and feedback need to be eliminated.

 

 A (possible) General Setup Recommendation:
(this scenario assumes that all of the in-class equipment is working correctly.)

  • Use the Type B or C equipment for the Camera only.
    • Leave the microphone off and muted.
    • Join the Zoom Meeting (without logging into Zoom)
  • Use the in-class computer for incoming Zoom audio. – (allowing the in-class participant to hear the remote participants)
    • Mute the microphone.
    • Turn up the in-room volume to a minimum “good” level. – Only loud enough to hear it “well enough”.  That will minimize the amount of sound that gets back into any un-muted microphones that are in the room.
    • This is the computer that should be shown on the in-class screen.
    • Join the Zoom Meeting (without logging into Zoom).
  • Use the microphone on your laptop for your voice.
    • Use your own laptop to log into the Zoom application and start the meeting as the Host.
    • Use the microphone on your laptop.  But, only unmute your microphone while you are speaking.
    • Mute the laptop speakers or plug headphones into the laptop, so that the sound doesn’t come out of the speakers.
    • Use this computer to run the class Zoom Meeting.  (sharing presentations, etc.)
  • Have each in-class student use their own laptop (or other mobile device) for their voice.
    • Have them use their laptops to join the Zoom meeting.
    • Have them mute the laptop speakers or plug headphones into the laptop, so that the sound doesn’t come out of the speakers.
    • Have them mute their microphones.
    • Have them unmute to talk to the class and then mute again.

 

Having said all of the above… Audio can be tricky, so if this doesn’t work, you may still be able to get it to work with some different tweaks.  For instance, it might actually work better if you use the microphone on the Type C equipment, instead of using your laptop microphone.  Just mute it, or turn it off, when you are not speaking.  You might also try having the in-class students adjust their microphone "Input volume" in Zoom's audio settings, to make them less sensitive.

 

If you try this and it doesn’t work correctly, let us know. We can help you figure out a solution – silcis@asu.edu