For up-to-date information on available technology resources during the Coronavirus pandemic, see our Computing Availability During COVID-19 article.

Pivoting Your Class to Remote

This guide walks you through the tactics you'll need to shift your class to fully remote with short notice. As such, it concentrates on the tactical efforts to make your class successful without rethinking the entire thing. For a much more in-depth look at teaching an online course, please read the Planning an Online Course article which covers the pros and cons of the different kinds of remote classes, managing the class, and more.

Be sure to read the Remote Teaching Checklist for additional tips.

This guide concentrates on four key areas:

  1. Setting up your Teaching Space
  2. Using Zoom
  3. Informing Students
  4. Preparing classroom tools

Setting up your Teaching Space

If a shift to remote learning is required, you most likely won't have access to any on-campus spaces. Give some thought to what you'll need ahead of time:

  • Which space will you use to conduct your remote class?
  • Do you have the proper equipment?
  • Do you have a reliable internet connection?

You can find a list of recommended equipment here. Some basic technology recommendations (like using a wired connection to the internet vs. wifi) are available to help you set up your space.

Using Zoom

The foundation of any remote class at Wharton is Zoom. You'll need to create a Zoom meeting for your class and share the meeting information with your class (and TAs). There are two recommended ways to set up your Zoom session:

If you have TAs be sure to make them alternative hosts of the meeting; if you're having your TAs set up the Zoom sessions, they should make you an alternative host. This way, you'll all have the ability to modify/start the meeting. 


Check "Record the meeting automatically," regardless of which method of Zoom scheduling you use: 

  • Using Canvas: The checkbox is located in the "Meeting Options" section.
  • Using Zoom: Click on "Advanced Options" and you'll see the "Automatically record meeting" option. Check it.

Once the recording is in Canvas (which happens automatically for Zoom sessions scheduled with Canvas, and requires manual uploading for anything scheduled outside of Canvas) Wharton Computing will handle the student availability of the recording based on your submitted preferences. 

Informing Students

With your Zoom meeting setup, you'll have the meeting information to distribute. If you've scheduled the meeting in Canvas, students will access it via your course site, but we recommend posting an announcement letting the students know.

If you've created a Zoom meeting outside of Canvas, be sure to share the meeting login information via whatever method you usually use to communicate with your class - email or Canvas.

Preparing Classroom Tools

Depending on your plan for the class session, a varying degree of additional preparation may be required.

The In-Person to Remote Instruction grid maps typical in-person classroom activities to remote equivalents. We recommend you consult this grid ahead of time as many of the remote counterparts require advanced setup.

Some of the more common activities have articles with detailed instructions: