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Zoom Best Practices for Privacy

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Zoom is not the recommended tool for creating pre-recorded lectures that can be shared with students. Instead, Panopto provides more options and flexibility for creating asynchronous content. Contact helpdesk@njcu.edu for assistance with this tool.

If an instructor chooses to record Zoom sessions in which students’ participation may be captured, they should do so in accordance with the following guidelines to minimize recording identifiable student participation as required by FERPA policy:

  • Use the following Zoom settings (These are set in compliance by default and should not need to be adjusted). To adjust or verify settings, go to your NJCU Zoom account (njcu.zoom.us) in your browser:
    • Disable the “record gallery view” option and enable the “record active speaker with shared screen” option in order to only record those who speak during the session. Students can choose to not show their video if they do not want it captured when they speak.
    • Disable the option for “display participants’ names in the recording.” Names will still be viewable to participants during the meeting, but will not be included in the recording.
    • Enable the “require password to access shared cloud recordings” option.
  • Students may opt-out from identification in the recording by muting their audio, not enabling video, and not typing in the chat window. In these cases, students should still be considered in attendance and not penalized in any way, and instructors should work with students to determine an alternate method of participation.
  • Notify students beforehand that Zoom sessions will be recorded – i.e. in the course syllabus. Similarly notify students beforehand that they may opt-out from identification in the recording by muting their audio, not enabling video, and not typing into the chat window. Remind students at the beginning of the class (either orally or using a slide) that the session will be recorded, and their options for opting-out of identification in the recording. In addition, all participants will automatically be notified of and be prompted to consent to the recording in Zoom.
  • Instructors should not insist upon student participation that reveals identifying information during the session.
  • Consider offering to pause the recording when students participate to avoid capturing their audio and video. For instructors who desire to make recordings available to other classes/cohorts, avoiding capture of student audio and video during class participation will allow the instructor to share the recording without first obtaining student consent prior to sharing a class recording. (See additional information below.)
  • If an instructor insists upon participation that reveals identifying information during class (either by audio, video, or chat), then the session should not be recorded.
  • Delete recordings of identifiable student participation, including files (e.g. transcript, chat logs) and Zoom recordings hosted on other platforms (e.g. Panopto), as soon as your obligations to your students allow. Until it is deleted, any recording of identifiable student participation should be treated as a student record subject to FERPA.
  • Disable the “local recording” option. For most instructors, recordings should be kept in the cloud and not downloaded to a local computer.
  • Access to class recordings must be limited to students in the class for educational review purposes. Faculty should include a statement on the syllabus or communicate in an equivalent method to all students in the class, “Class meetings recorded by the instructor may be shared with students in the class for instructional purposes related to this class. Students are not permitted to copy or share the recording with others.” For any disclosure beyond the class or for other purposes, identifiable student information must be removed or students who are identifiable must provide written consent prior to disclosure.
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