Zoom: Chat, reactions, and polls

While Zoom allows you to talk with those in other spaces, it also brings the risk of people talking over each other. This is especially true if a meeting is large or participants are dealing with technical issues. Thankfully, Zoom provides ways for participants to ask questions and engage without speaking.

Use Chat

In-meeting chat messages can help those dealing with technical difficulties as well as those reluctant to speak during group conversation. To help everyone get the best use out of the chat, do the following:

  • Appoint a co-host to moderate the chat full-time, replying to questions and summarizing comments. This is particularly useful in large meetings.
  • If you don't have a co-host, check in on the chat at various intervals, making sure you haven't missed any questions or comments.
  • Invite discussion by posing questions, either verbally or in the chat, that participants will need to write responses to.
  • Remind participants they can increase their font size if they are having difficulty reading comments.

Caution: Participants who call into a meeting will not be able to see chat messages. Check out 

Joining a Zoom meeting by phone for more details

Use Reactions

Non-verbal feedback reactions are designed as digital equivalents of physical cues like raising a hand. They are useful tool for hosts to get quick feedback from participants. 

Zoom Reactions Menu

Some of the most important responses are:
  •  Raise Hand indicates that a participants wants to speak. Information on who has raised their hand will appear in several places in the Zoom. A host may lower a participant's hand or the participant may do it themselves.
  • Yes or No can be used to conduct informal polls. Zoom will keep a tally of how many participants pick either option. 
  • Slow down or Speed up can be used by participants to tell the speaker to change the pace of the presentation.
  • I'm away indicates that a participant is not at their desk.

In addition, the reactions menu also has a full emoji keyboard. Id can be used in informal polls (e.g., "Use the laughing emoji for answer A") or to gauge feedback. Zoom also allows users to add custom emojis.

Use Polls/Quizzes

If you want to prepare questions ahead of time and save participant responses, you will need to use Zoom’s Polls/Quizzes feature. While Conducting polls in meetings and Conducting quizzes in meetings are nearly identical features, quizzes allows you to set correct answers ahead of time. 

Some important points to consider with polls and quizzes include the following:

  • You cannot create and manage polls from the Zoom Mobile app. During meetings, mobile app users will not be able to run polls, although they can still participate in them.
  • Meeting hosts, alternative hosts, and co-hosts can set up poll questions in advance within the Zoom web portal.
  • Only the person who launches the poll can see real-time results as people vote, although cumulative data will be shared with everyone once a poll closes. Poll reports can be downloaded once you have run a poll in a meeting. The report will only include data for a poll's most recent iteration. If you run it multiple times, new results will overwrite old ones. 
  • The only way participants' names can be included in poll reports is to require registration for a meeting.  Registered participants will be identified by their name and email addresses. If registration is turned off, authenticated users will still have their names and emails addresses attached, but unauthenticated users will only have their profile name. As part of the poll/quiz settings, hosts can


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