Tips for Hosting a More Accessible Zoom Session

Sound quality

The quality of sound is important for everyone attending the Zoom session especially those who may have a hard time hearing.

  • Try to reduce any background noise. A heater, fan, or even a cat at the door can be picked up on a microphone and be distracting.
  • Stay close to the microphone so your voice gets picked up directly.
  • Mute participants who are not speaking, especially in large groups. For the speaker it makes it hard to determine if someone is trying to speak or if it is a car driving by. Muting options:
    • Mute participants on entry
    • Mute All tool
    • Mute Individuals

Presenter Tip: Let participants know they have been muted upon entry and provide direction for how and when they should unmute to participate.


Recording your Zoom session is helpful for those who cannot attend classes, for those who do not have great internet access, and for those who find it helpful to review the material later in the semester.

 Recording Options

  1. Record and save the file to Zoom Cloud - your recording will be sent to Panopto Video and be captioned.


In-session chat can be very useful during meetings. It is non-intrusive and can be helpful for attendees to participate who may be in noisy areas.

Presenter tips for using chat:

  • State how people should use chat, how the host will handle the chats, and what will happen to the chat content at the end of the session.
  • Read the chat comments aloud as part of the session.
  • Share the chat with participants by email before or after the meeting or save the entire chat to your computer and share elsewhere.

Screen sharing

You might share your screen to show PowerPoint slides or to use the whiteboard. People who are blind or have low vision may also be unable to see the screen, and cannot read the screen-share contents using assistive technology.

Presenter tips for screen sharing:

  • Verbalize what is on the screen and the actions you are taking. Participants who are calling in or have bad Internet connections may be unable to see the screen. 
  • Send any materials you plan to display through screen sharing to your participants ahead of time. This allows everyone to access the materials and follow along if they cannot access the screen share during the session.


There are creative ways to use the polling feature for participation during meetings or to survey participants. 

Presenter tips for polling:

  • Make sure everyone can participate. The polling feature is accessible to people who use assistive technology. It is not accessible by people joining by phone, offer an alternative way for them to send in responses.
  • Notify participants verbally when you are launching a poll. This is especially helpful for assistive technology users as well as anyone who may not be looking at their screen. 
  • Allow time for participants to find and participate in the poll.

Transcripts and captioning for completed Zoom recordings

Zoom recordings stored in Zoom Cloud will be sent directly to Panopto Video for captioning. In addition to captioning Panopto will create an interactive transcript along with the captions. 


Article ID: 104931
Thu 4/9/20 9:36 AM
Wed 6/1/22 6:51 AM

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Digital accessibility is the process of making digital products, such as websites, mobile apps, and other online tools, accessible to everyone. It is about ensuring all users can access the same information, regardless of ability.