Classroom Technology Tips

This service is for faculty and staff.

Review these tips to get the most use out of your classroom technology. This article does not cover all aspects of the classroom technology and if you haven't viewed it yet, we encourage you to first visit the Classroom Technology Training Videos article to get started with learning all about St. Thomas classroom technology.

Select the USB Audio CODEC (microphone) and PTZ Pro 2 (camera) for the optimal classroom experience 

Pan-tilt-zoom Webcam   classroom microphone


Within Zoom, ITS recommends the USB Audio CODEC as the default boundary microphone and the PTZ Pro 2 as the default camera source. Please review Selecting Sources in Zoom if you are unsure how to view and change sources within Zoom.

Boundary Microphone Placement

             classroom microphone


The classroom microphone is designed to prioritize audio input from the front side. For optimal audio quality, it's recommended to face the microphone towards the front of class during lectures and towards the students during long periods of classroom discussion. Review the Area Microphone Tour for more details.

How to resolve a pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) webcam issue

Pan-tilt-zoom Webcam

Make sure to point the nose of the remote control directly at the webcam from eye level. Occasionally you may need to step closer to the webcam to get a response. If that doesn’t work…​​​​​

There are occasional glitches with webcams and remotes. Here’s what may happen and a simple fix:

A classroom webcam may occasionally...

  • not respond to preset shot buttons 1, 2 and 3 on the handheld remote (most common issue)
  • not respond to manual pan-tilt-zoom buttons on the remote (less common)
  • not wake up to show video in Zoom at all (rare)

How to fix: The camera is plugged into a regular wall power outlet located near it. Unplug the power cord from the outlet, wait 3 seconds, then plug it back in. Then restart video in Zoom. Normal response to the remote should be restored.

If unplugging/re-plugging the camera’s power cord doesn’t resolve the issue, please contact ITS.

Use the hovercam to capture alternate views of the classroom


To capture an alternate view of your classroom in Zoom or Panopto, use the webcam build into the hovercam.

  • The webcam is high quality
  • Use the Auto-Focus Lock (AF-L button) on the hovercam to focus the webcam and lock it in
  • The 15' extension cable enables you to move the camera around the teaching station for greatest flexibility
  • View our 2 minute HoverCam Basic Tour video to get started and learn more


ADVANCED: Use both classroom cameras in Zoom and Panopto

Consider using both the PTZ webcam and the hovercam at the same time to share two views of your classroom. 

  • Every classroom is built out with both cameras
  • It will take advance practice to learn dual camera mode and it's a great way to enhance the student experience
  • View our 2 minute video on how to set up dual camera mode


Classroom microphone tips 

classroom microphone

  • ITS recommends using the MXL area microphone (picture above) as your default microphone source in Zoom and Panopto. This source is labeled Microphone (USB audio CODEC) in Zoom and Panopto
  • As a alternate option, you may choose to use the hovercam's microphone, this source is labeled Microphone (HoverCam Solo 8)
  • If the microphone level is excessively low or high within Zoom, try to MUTE and then UN-MUTE your microphone, this will reset the auto-adjust levels.
  • View our 3 minute video on Microphone Quality to learn more


View up to 49 participants in Zoom (if supported by your device)

The default setting in Zoom will show 25 participants in Gallery View. To increase this to 49, follow these steps:

  • Open your Zoom Desktop Client (not the Zoom web portal)
  • Click on the small Gear Icon under your profile name/picture
  • Click on the Video Tab
  • Scroll down to where it says Maximum participants displayed per screen in Gallery View
  • Change the setting to 49 participants
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Article ID: 126856
Fri 1/29/21 2:39 PM
Fri 1/21/22 9:45 AM

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ITS provides training, support, and additional services to ensure that classrooms, meeting rooms, and large event spaces are suitably equipped for a positive educational experience.