The web conference platform Zoom. Stony Brook University plans to use Zoom and Google hangouts as alternative teaching platforms. SCREENSHOT OF ZOOM

Stony Brook University officially implemented the web conferencing platform Zoom, according to a March 16 email from the university’s Division of Technology.

The university plans to use Zoom and Google Hangouts as teaching platforms, according to an email sent last week from Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Nicole Sampson.

Stony Brook University is moving classes online after spring break, and extending spring break an extra week, until March 27, to give faculty and staff more time to prepare for the transition.

The university’s Zoom account is “currently in a beta testing phase,” according to the campus-wide email, and student accounts may be labeled “free version,” which will change after the university finishes beta testing. Student accounts, however, should be fully functional.

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The email noted that there should be an automatic transition from pre-existing free Zoom accounts associated with Stony Brook email addresses.

“However if the Zoom account associated with your StonyBrook.edu email is a paid subscription or has expired, you may experience a challenge when switching over to the Stony Brook enterprise Zoom account,” Charlie McMahon, interim senior vice president and enterprise chief information officer, wrote in the email. “Should you experience trouble, sign into the self-service portal at https://service.stonybrook.edu/portal with your NetID and password.”

Each Blackboard course should have its own “Zoom room,” according to the email. Blackboard courses now include a button labeled “Zoom Meeting” on the drop-down screen to the left. According to a Zoom video tutorial, students may also receive a join link via an email invite.

“Zoom Meeting” is now an option on Blackboard in each course in the drop-down menu on the left side of the screen.  SCREENSHOT OF BLACKBOARD

Students are able to sign into Zoom through a portal on the university’s Division of Technology website. The platform offers meeting tests to let participants make sure their camera and audio works. Users will have to download the Zoom application to their desktops or the app on their phones in order to join meetings.

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Students can also sign in via their stonybrook.edu Gmail accounts. There’s now a Zoom button on a toolbar to the right of the Gmail panel. To sign in, students should click on the button and click “sign in.”

Zoom, where students can sign in with their stonybrook.edu Gmail accounts. SCREENSHOT OF ZOOM

If students haven’t signed in elsewhere yet, they can create an account through Google. Otherwise, students can click on a link at the bottom of the pop-up box to sign in through a company domain. If students type in “stonybrook,” they should be able to finish signing in with their net I.D. and password.

A Stony Brook student using their Stony Brook Gmail account to create their Zoom account. Their name is blocked out for privacy. SCREENSHOT OF ZOOM

The university email advised students looking for more information to visit the university’s Zoom service page, and to “explore the Zoom service as soon as possible” to become familiar with its features.

The Division of Technology set up a form for feedback on Zoom, and pointed students towards live training webinars hosted by the platform to prepare for online classes.

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