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Breakout Room


Breakout rooms are sessions that are split off from the main Zoom meeting. They allow the participants to meet in smaller groups, and are completely isolated in terms of audio and video from the main session. Breakout rooms can be used for collaboration and discussion of the meeting.

Meeting Host

  • The meeting host can choose to split the participants of the meeting into these separate sessions automatically or manually, and can switch between sessions at any time.
  • Up to 50 breakout rooms may be created during the session.
  • Meeting host or a co-hosts can jump between different Breakout Rooms to interact with the participants within that specific room. 

Breakout Rooms   

As a meeting host, you can split your meeting participants into breakout rooms when scheduling the meeting.

  • Participants may be "locked" into breakout rooms for a specified amount of time or allowed to exit rooms after the assignment is complete.
  • Specific breakout rooms may be recorded, as enabled by the host.
  • Can broadcast a chat message (one way) to all participants in every breakout room. 
  • Meeting participants can speak, share screen, and be seen as normal after they accept the "Breakout Room Join" popup.
  • Breakout room participants can use the 'Ask for Help' icon to invite the host to join their respective breakout room for assistance.

Allow Participants to Move Freely in Breakout Rooms

Hosts may also select 'Let Participants Choose Room' to allow participants to move freely between Breakout Rooms without needing the host's help.

  • Useful for peer mentoring and small group discussions.

  • Great for allowing students to actively work on newly discussed topics, and then presenting specific learning outcomes to the overall group.

  • Breakout rooms and Zoom Polling work well together.  Create a poll to assess participant knowledge and determine breakout room "peer mentors" based upon the result of the poll.

  • Multiple subject matter experts can be assigned to lead discrete breakout rooms for topical discussions.

  • Note: Users joined into the Zoom meeting from the Zoom Desktop Client, Zoom Mobile App, or H.323/SIP devices can participate in breakout rooms. Users joined via the web client and Zoom Rooms are unable to join Breakout Rooms, but the main room can be used as an alternative session for these users.

Breakout Rooms

Getting Started
Zoom 101

Pre-assigning Participants 

Pre-assignments may only apply to the first participant to join the meeting. This can be resolved by following the instructions in "recover to pre-assigned breakout rooms"


  • If the host has allowed participants to self-select and join breakout rooms of their choosing, participants will be able to view and select from a list of breakout rooms the host has created.
  • They will be able to enter/leave breakout rooms freely
Zoom Workshop (3 parts)

Resources for assistance or follow up questions and concerns.

Contact UNC Asheville's Information Technology IT Service Desk for assistance in implementing the above described services and support.  Email: or by calling 828.251.6445

Contact UNC Asheville's Center for Teaching and Learning unit for pedagogy and teaching strategies regarding this knowledge base article.  Email: or by calling 828.251.6540

Use the Zoom Video Communication system knowledge base for Zoom meeting specific support questions or concerns.

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