Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation
Main content start

Self-joining breakout rooms in Zoom

Technical documentation on how to configure Zoom breakout rooms

Zoom Breakout Rooms allow students to have smaller discussions apart from larger meetings. While instructors can assign students to rooms, they can also let students choose their own breakout room. Zoom Breakout Rooms requires the use of Zoom version 5.3.0 or above.

Create and manage breakout rooms

Note: If you plan to record meetings to the cloud, you should schedule them from the Canvas Zoom tool so they will automatically appear in Canvas. Please note that cloud recordings are only of the main room, even if the host enters a breakout room. 

  1. After logging in and starting your meeting as host, click the Breakout Room button
    Breakout Room button
    at the bottom right of your window. If you don’t see the button, maximize your screen, or find Breakout Rooms under More (...)
  2. Choose the number of breakout rooms you want, select Let participants choose a room, and click Create. (Skip this step and the next if you set up breakout rooms in advance by editing the meeting at the Zoom webportal. )
  3. You will see a list of all breakout rooms, which can be adjusted before you open them.
    Before opening breakout rooms: a) Hover to rename or delete rooms b)  Click Settings icon, and check “Allow participants to choose room”  and adjust settings that control how participants can leave breakout rooms c) Click Open All Rooms
  4. After you click Open All Rooms, participants can enter them. If they haven’t upgraded to Zoom version 5.3.0 or above, you can assign them by hovering over their name. 
    Breakout Rooms in progress: Hover over participant name to assign them to a room, Hover over participant number to see Join, Close rooms when you are done
  5. Learn more about managing breakout rooms (be sure to click on your OS to open detailed instructions). 
  6. You can join a room by hovering over the blue number link and clicking Join
  7. Clicking Close All Rooms will bring students back to the main meeting.

Joining a breakout room: Instructions to give students

If your instructor grants you the ability to choose your breakout room during a meeting, you must upgrade to Zoom version 5.3.0 or above and follow the instructions below. See Zoom’s guide to participating in Zoom breakout rooms for general advice, which includes mobile OS support. 

  1. After joining your meeting, click Breakout Rooms.
    Breakout Room button
    If you don’t see the Breakout Rooms button at the bottom right of the window, maximize your screen, or find Breakout Rooms under More (...)
  2. You will see the names of rooms and participants who have already joined them. 
  3. You can join a room by hovering over the blue number link and clicking Join.
    Join link visible when you hover over the blue number of participants in room
  4. You can ask for help from the instructor or move to other breakout rooms at will.
  5. Unless the host has elected to only have you return after they close the breakout room, you can click Leave, then Leave Breakout Room, to return to the main session window.

More News Topics