Pronouns Virtually

Pronouns matter and they matter virtually too. If you have added a chosen name into the College of Wooster system, this will display in all platforms across Microsoft Teams and Zoom. There is no alternative way to change your name or to add pronouns in Teams, but you can add a background that includes these to both Teams and Zoom. See below for more information. For a downloadable version of this guide, click here.

Creating a Virtual Background (to include name and pronouns):

Pronouns Background 1

A lot of online services allow you to create your own virtual backgrounds for Zoom. The example shown here uses a free graphic design service called Canva. Here’s how you can make your own:

  1. Go to www.canva.com and create a free Canva account
  2. Pronouns Background 2
    Using the search tool, search ‘Zoom Virtual Background’ (Dimensions: 1280px x 720px)
  3. Select from one of dozens of templates, make your own, or add one of our Wooster backgrounds
  4. Add your name and your pronouns to the background. As an option, add one of our Wooster pronoun stickers to your background!
  5. Download as a PNG
  6. In the Zoom.us desktop client, go to ‘Settings’ as noted above and select ‘Visual Background’
    Pronouns Background 3
  7. Using the (+) icon, upload your new, fabulous background where everyone can readily see your name and pronounshello

Adding a Background on Zoom

  • In the Zoom.us desktop client, go to ‘Settings’ as noted above and select ‘Visual Background’
  • Using the (+) icon, upload your new, fabulous background where everyone can readily see your name and pronouns

Adding Your Virtual Background in Teams:

  • To change in Teams before the meeting starts:
    • While you're setting up your video and audio before joining a meeting, select Background effects > Background settings . It's just to the right of the mic switch. Your background options will display on the right.
    • Choose Blur to blur your background. You'll appear nice and clear while everything behind you is subtly concealed.
    • You can replace your background with one of the images provided, or with one of your own choosing. To use an image of your own, choose Add new and then select one to upload from your computer. Make sure it's a .JPG, .PNG, or .BMP file.
    • Your new background will persist in all your meetings and calls until you change it again.
  • To change background during meeting: 
    • To alter your background after you've already joined a meeting, go to your meeting controls and select More actions   More options button  > Show background effects.
    • Select Blur to blur your background, or choose from the available images to replace it.
    • To upload an image of your own, select Add new and pick a .JPG, .PNG, or .BMP file from your computer.
    • You'll be able to preview your chosen background to see how it looks before you apply it.

Names and Pronouns in Teams

If you have added a chosen name into the College of Wooster system, this will display in all platforms across Microsoft Teams and Zoom. There is no alternative way to change your name or to add pronouns in Teams, but you can add a background that includes these to both Teams and Zoom.

Changing Your Name/Pronoun in Zoom

To change in settings:

  • Step 1: Open your Zoom app and click on Settings in the bottom right corner of your screen. 
  • Step 2: Tap on your 'Profile' at the top of your sidebar and then select 'Display Name'. 
  • Step 3: Once selected, enter your desired new name in the two text fields that appear and tap on 'Ok' to finalize your name change. Add your pronouns to the text box of your last name, i.e. “Awesome Scot (they/them/theirs)”

To rename for a single meeting: 

  • Step 1: To change your name after entering a Zoom meeting, click on the “Participants” button at the top of the Zoom window.
  • Step 2: Next, hover your mouse over your name in the “Participants” list on the right side of the Zoom window. Click on “Rename”.
  • Step 3: Enter the name you'd like to appear in the Zoom meeting and click on “OK”. Add your pronouns to the text box of your last name, i.e. “Awesome Scot (they/them/theirs)”

Faculty/Staff Zoom Setup

Students can only change their display name if the staff or faculty member who set up the meeting has “allow participants to rename themselves” turned on under Settings/Meeting/In Meeting (Basic).