December 3, 2020

Using Zoom

Computer Requirements

  • For best results, an internet connection speed of 10mbps or higher is preferred. Test your speed.
  • For best results, it is recommended that you use a device produced within the last five years. Older devices may not support the apps and speeds necessary for our Livestream or On Demand programs.
  • For best results, you will need an internal or external microphone and camera.
  • For best results, close all other apps and browser windows.
  • You will need an active email address to register and to receive important information about your program from IMS. If you do not receive registration confirmation or other program information from IMS, please check the Spam folder attached to your email account.
  • You do not need a Zoom account to attend an IMS/Zoom retreat. We will send you all required links. However, having a Zoom account may be of use if you experience technical difficulties on your device.
  • If using a mobile device, download the Zoom app. Get Zoom for iOS. Get Zoom for Android.

Click here for helpful information on how to get started with Zoom on Windows or Mac

Click here for other useful information about Zoom

Entering a Zoom Meeting or Webinar

  1. IMS will send you a program confirmation page with links to each session. Please save this page as you will need the links to access your program.
  2. When you first click on your Zoom link, if your device does not already have the Zoom app installed, a pop up box will appear with an invitation to download Zoom. Download the software and say “yes” to any legitimate prompts. Once the necessary software is downloaded, you will be able to access the Zoom session without having to enter any personal information or open an account. 
  3. When prompted, click to Join With Video.
  4. When prompted, click to Join With Computer Audio.
  5. To change your name or add preferred pronouns to your image, hover over your image and click the “three dots” (…) icon. Select “Rename,” type your new information, and hit Return on your keyboard.

Click here for a helpful video from Zoom about joining a meeting.

Turning your microphone on and off

  1. On the lower left section of your Zoom window there is a small icon of a microphone. Click the microphone to “Mute” or “Unmute” yourself. When you are muted, a red slash will cover the microphone icon.
  2. Please note that when your microphone is on, other attendees can hear you even if you cannot hear them. It is requested that all microphones be kept off unless specifically requested by a teacher.

Turning your camera on and off

  1. On the lower left section of your Zoom window—next to the microphone icon—there is another icon that looks like a video camera. Click the camera to “Start Video” or “Stop Video.” When your camera is off, a red slash will cover the camera icon.
  2. Please remember that when your camera is on, other attendees can see you, even if you cannot see them. It is helpful to leave your camera off until you are settled and prepared to be seen.

Speaker View vs. Gallery View

  1. On the upper right section of your Zoom window, you may select between “Speaker View” and Gallery View.” Speaker View allows you to see the person speaking in a prominent position on your screen. “Gallery View” allows you to see all attendees, including those who are not speaking. Experiment to discover your preference.
  2. If you wish to see only one person on your screen (e.g. the teacher), you may also “Pin” that specific person. In Gallery View, hover your mouse over the desired person and click the “three dots” icon (…) in the upper right of their video. Click “Pin Video.”
  3. If you do not want to see yourself on screen, hover your mouse over your own image (in either Speaker View or Gallery View), click on the “three dots” icon (…) and click “Hide Self.”

Full Screen Viewing

On the upper right section of your Zoom window, click the square “Screen Size” icon to expand the Zoom window to full screen. Click “esc” (escape) on your keyboard to return to regular window. You will not exit the meeting when you reduce the screen size by hitting escape in this way.

Chat, Raise Hand, & Q&A

IMS teachers prefer that you do not use the Chat, Raise Hand, or Q&A features unless specifically invited to do so. This helps minimize distractions from the Dharma Talk or practice session in progress. When invited…

  1. To Chat: Locate the Chat icon on the bottom of your Zoom window and click to toggle it open. A pop up Chat window will appear. Type your message and hit Return on your keyboard to send. Note that you can send a chat to “everyone” or to a specific person by clicking the appropriate name in the chat box at the bottom. Please do not send private chats to other attendees during program sessions.
  2. To Raise Hand (in Meeting Format): Click the “Participants” icon on the bottom of your Zoom window. A list will appear with the “Raise Hand” option available at the bottom.
  3. To ask a Question in Q&A (in Webinar Format): Locate the Q&A icon on the bottom of your Zoom window and click to toggle it open. A pop up Q&A window will appear. Type your question and hit Return on your keyboard to send.


If you have proper internet connection, and Zoom is installed on your device but does not open properly, try the following:

  1. Close the Zoom app and all browser windows and try logging in again.
  2. For Windows: go to Task Manager to close Zoom and the web browser. Try logging in again.
  3. For Mac, go to Activity Monitor to close Zoom and the web browser. Try logging in again.
  4. Use Force Quit to log out of the app and your browsers. Try logging in again.
  5. If it still does not work, consider rebooting your computer.
  6. Last, email for support.