University of Wisconsin–Madison
Blue background with a video camera icon in a circle and the word "zoom"

Zoom is coming to UW–‍Madison, fall semester 2020

UW–‍Madison is working toward site licensing Zoom to provide our campus community with a secure, supported version of Zoom for all of your university activities. Procurement is underway and we aim to have Zoom available to all faculty, staff and students early in the fall semester.

Many in our community already use Zoom, and we recognize both the need for a more secure environment and for Zoom to be a supported option. Transition planning is underway and information is coming soon about when UW–‍Madison Zoom will be available and how you can access it. Communication is also forthcoming for those with current Zoom licenses, which will outline how you can transition into the campus-wide UW–‍Madison Zoom.

Zoom will be an additional tool for the coming academic year and will not replace any existing tools, including Microsoft Teams, Webex and Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, which will remain the Canvas-integrated video conference tool. Faculty may hold classes in Zoom simply by setting up a recurring meeting.

Acquiring Zoom has been a collaborative effort and it’s important to recognize those involved. At the end of spring semester, the faculty governance Information Technology Committee (ITC) partnered with the office of the Chief Information Officer to survey faculty about their instructional, research and administrative experiences with videoconferencing. Over 800 faculty responded thoughtfully about their experiences, with a large majority requesting Zoom for its features that better support instruction, research and engagement.

“We are pleased to be able to provide Zoom to the campus community,” said Provost Karl Scholz and Vice Chancellor Laurent Heller.

“I greatly appreciate the seriousness with which the faculty approached the survey, and the detailed information that was provided regarding the types of video conferencing options that would best ensure a superior student experience,” said Shawn Green, associate professor of psychology and chair of the ITC.

The sentiment was echoed by Joe Salmons, professor of language sciences and past chair of the ITC: “I appreciate the continued support of the faculty for the ITC and their willingness to engage in shared governance on these important matters.”

Our thanks to Shawn Green and Joe Salmons, as well as Hanna Klecka, lab manager of the Green Learning and Transfer Lab, for conducting the faculty survey.