Technology and Tools

The primary tools you’ll use are Canvas and Zoom.

Many students are already familiar with Canvas, Harvard’s learning management system.

Zoom is a web conferencing system that is integrated with Canvas.

To start using Zoom

  1. Try to find a quieter place with fewer distractions. Do what you can to ensure you have good internet or cell signal. (If your bandwidth is low, trying turning off your video.)

  2. Download the Zoom software at

  3. Go to and check your internet connection, audio, and video. (If the audio isn’t working, make sure your computer volume is turned up and your microphone is on.)

  4. Go to your course’s Canvas site. (For a quick refresher on Canvas, see this video overview.) 

  5. Click on the Zoom link in the left navigation of your course.

  6. Close tabs and applications you won’t need, particularly those with notifications.

  7. Turn your camera on (if needed).

  8. Mute your mic (bottom left corner).


Other Zoom notes


Watch video tutorials

These videos will help you get ready for online learning in Zoom and Canvas.


Other IT resources

Review your remote computer configuration.