Virtual Classrooms

Everything you need to know about learning with Zoom Virtual Classrooms

Participating in a Zoom Virtual Classroom

This guide shows you how to participate in a Zoom virtual classroom. To fully participate in a Zoom virtual classroom, it is recommended that you work from a computer enabled with a webcam, speakers, and a microphone. You may also like to use a headset or a headphone with an attached speaker.

This guide covers the following topics, use these links for easier navigation:

Related guide:


 First time using Zoom?

If this is your first time using Zoom you will need to download the Zoom Desktop Client, then Sign in to the VU Zoom Portal.

  1. Go to VU Zoom Portal - victoriauniversity.zoom.us
  2. Click Download Client (1), and follow the instructions to install
  3. From the VU Zoom Portal, click Sign-in (2) and login with your Student UserID and Password
  4. Optionally, you can edit settings, access, and schedule meetings. 
  5. Your account is now configured to VU, and you may now close the window.

vu zoom portal


Access a Zoom Virtual Classroom

Google Chrome is recommended for Zoom and VU Collaborate, make sure to regularly update Google Chrome for usability and security.

  1. In a unit space, on the navbar, select Communication then Zoom Classroom.
  2. From the list of scheduled Zoom meetings, select Join, to launch your virtual classroom.
  3. Select Open Zoom Meetings.
  4. If the session has not yet started, you may see a notice asking you to wait.
  5. When started, the Zoom Meeting window will open.
  6. On entering, check that your microphone is on mute and that your video is on.


Participating in Zoom



The chat allows you to post messages to everyone, or just your host (teacher), to share text, links, documents and/or screenshots.

  • On the meetings toolbar, click Chat (1)
  • Enter text (2), links, and/or drag and drop files (3) into the text input box
  • Select to format text (4), add emojis (5), files (6), and/or take screenshots (7) 
  • Select to share with everyone, or just the host (teacher)
  • Press Enter to post and share

 chat to enter text emoji documents and screenshots


Reactions allow you to provide quick responses in meetings.

1. In the meetings toolbar, click Reactions (1), then select a reaction, that will be displayed on the screen.

select reactions

  • Most will be displayed for 15 seconds before vanishing.
    • Clap Emoji  Clapping hands - congratulate
    • Thumbs Up Emoji  Thumbs Up - agree
    • Joy Emoji  Joy - hilarious or joyful
    • Open Mouth Emoji  Open Mouth - shock or surprise
    • Heart Emoji  Heart - loved something
    • Tada Emoji  Tada - celebrate 

  • Others will stay until they are unselected.
    • raised hand Raise Hand - to ask a question or join in the discussion. 
    • yes  Yes 
    • no  No 
    • I am away  I'm away

Share Screen and Files 

During a Zoom session, you may share your screen, or opened applications with other participants.

  1.  In the meetings toolbar, click Share Screen (1)
  2.  Select to share a Screen (2), Whiteboard, application or another option.
  3. If you want to share a video or sound from your computer, tick to select Share Sound and Optimize for video clip (3)
  4. When ready, click Share (4).
  5. Once you have completed sharing, select the Stop Share to ensure your peers are no longer viewing your screen.

share screen

If you would like to select another view besides Basic, you can select either Advanced or Files.

Advanced options will allow you to select an array of particular sharing settings such as allowing a slide to display as your virtual background.   


You may use Annotate to make notes, drawings, and/or add arrows on the share screen during a virtual classroom session.

  • If you are sharing - select Annotate from the toolbar
  • If you are viewing a share - from the top of the window, select View Options (1) then Annotate (2).

from view options select annotate

annotation tools 

  • Mouse - Regain mouse control.
  • Select - Select and move annotations.
  • Text - Type a message onto the screen.
  • Draw - Draw or create shapes.
  • Stamp - Select ticks, stars and other options
  • Spotlight - Spotlight pointer, and named Arrow stamp
  • Eraser - Clear your annotations. 
  • Colour- Select the colour of shapes, and the colour and font size of text
  • Undo/Redo - Undo or redo the latest annotation you have performed. 
  • Clear - This will provide you with further 'clear' options.
  • Save - Download the annotated screen share, as a PNG or PDF.
  • Close - close the toolbar

If you do not have the annotation option available, you may need to check your Zoom account.

  • Go to the VU Zoom web portal victoriauniversity.zoom.us and sign in with your Student UserID and Password.
  • In the navigation panel, click Settings.
  • Click the Meeting tab.
  • Under Meeting (Basic), verify that Annotation is enabled.
  • If the setting is disabled, click the toggle to enable it. If a verification dialogue displays, click Turn On to verify the change.

Breakout Rooms

During your Zoom class, your academic may want you to do group work in Zoom breakout rooms.

Joining a Breakout Room

1. After your teacher or host has invited you to the breakout room, select Join, from the pop-up window.

select to joint a breakout room

2. If you select Not Now, you can still join a Breakout Room. On the Meeting tool bar select Breakout Rooms (1), then Join (2), next to the room you should join. 

select a breakout room

Participating in Zoom Breakout Room

Once you have joined the breakout room, you will have full controls similar to the meeting. You can:

breakout room controls

  • Mute/Unmute to speak
  • Start/Stop Video/Camera
  • Participants - view the Participants list
  • Chat - type messages to the other participants in your breakout room
  • Share screen 
  • Ask For Help - request help from the teacher or host.
  • Reactions - virtual emotes


Leaving the Breakout Room

You can leave the breakout room and return to the main meeting session at any time.

1. Select Leave Room, then Leave Breakout Room

select to leave break out room


Leave a Session

1. On the meetings toolbar, click Leave (1), then Leave Meeting (2).

select to leave meeting