Online Teaching Guidance for Faculty and Senior Fellows

Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning

The Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning continues to work with faculty, teaching fellows, and students to prepare them for class as Yale to online teaching and learning.  The Center has already posted a large amount of material about pedagogical strategies, logistic concerns, and technological resources that you can use when classes must meet remotely. Please read or reread the excellent suggestions on that website.

The Center has also launched a microsite focused on Academic Continuity: it includes videos, webpages, and PDF handouts dedicated to explaining how instructors can transition their courses using technology platforms and pedagogical strategies.

Additionally, if you have any resources or information related to academic continuity for faculty, teaching fellows, or students, the Center is happy to partner with you and share your information on their site. Please submit requests through their “Contact Us” form and use the subject “Partner information for AC website.”

The Yale College Dean’s Office has offered a page of preliminary FAQs to assist with continuity of instruction.


Installation Instructions

We would recommend installing Zoom well before your first online class so that there is enough time to solve any technical hurdles. If you’re having any trouble and need help installing Zoom, please contact Lisa Brennan (

One more very good reason for using Zoom is that Yale offers stellar support:

If you are unfamiliar with Zoom—and even if you are only somewhat familiar with it—we would highly recommend taking one of Yale’s online Zoom tutorials.

Yale also offers a host of resources on how to mesh Zoom with your existing Canvas page, schedule online classes etc. This page explains (among many other things) how to add a Zoom tab to your Canvas class page and schedule Zoom sessions.

It is possible to record a Zoom session with students and post it online. We would highly recommend doing this, and setting up your Zoom sessions such that the recording is automatic. It is more than likely that some students will miss classes as the pandemic progresses and things become more chaotic, and for them recorded Zoom sessions will be very valuable.

Zoom etiquette

A few pointers that everyone seems to be converging on are:

  • Specify what type of engagement and interaction is expected of students during a Zoom class session
  • Everyone should have their cameras on during class. Seeing each other’s faces matters!
  • Limited background noise, and preferably use headphones with a microphone
  • A Zoom session requires clearer leadership than a in-person seminar discussion. Students should signal to speak, and ask them to be on mute otherwise.
  • Log into the Zoom class waiting room 10 minutes before on the first week; less the following weeks
  • Have students use the hand raising function, as opposed to chat, to keep things more lively and interactive
Zoom Guide for Students
Help for TFs

The Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning is offering daily office hours from 1pm to 2pm starting March 19. This time is for teaching fellows to ask questions, try out tools, and share insights with fellow TFs. The Center will also offer one-on-one and small group Zoom consultations by appointment.