Zoom Webinar

Summer 2021 Update:

Zoom has upgraded our licenses to a large audience capacity! We now offer 500 and 1000 participant webinar licenses for use by members of the Emerson community.

For virtual events, IT can provide a license for a Zoom Webinar to reach wider audiences in a more formal presentation setting. Availability is limited, so please reach out to us at helpdesk@emerson.edu as early as possible to reserve a webinar license for your event.

Please read the comparison between Zoom Meetings and Webinars below to see which is more appropriate for your event.

Want more information?

Please visit our guide on Hosting a Special Event in Zoom.

Meetings vs. Webinars





Zoom meetings are ideal for hosting more interactive sessions where you’ll want to have lots of audience participation or break your session into smaller groups.

Think of webinars like a virtual lecture hall or auditorium. Webinars are ideal for large audiences or events that are open to the public. Typically, webinar attendees do not interact with one another. Though Zoom provides options for you to get more social with your attendees, your average webinar has one or a few people speaking to an audience.

Use Case

Small to large groups (2+ participants) for:

  • Classroom session
  • Team/department meetings
  • Training session

Large events and public broadcasts (50+ attendees) such as:

  • Faculty Assembly
  • Staff Forum
  • Educational lectures


  • Faculties and students
  • Staff
  • Individuals
  • Event hosts

Side-by-side feature comparison




Participant Roles

Audio Sharing 

  • All participants can mute/unmute their own audio
  • Host can mute/request to unmute participants
  • The Host can set all participants to mute upon entry
  • Only the Host and panelists can mute/unmute their own audio 
  • Attendees join in listen-only mode*
  • The Host can unmute one or more attendees 

Video Sharing

All Participants 

Hosts and Panelists 

Screen Sharing 


Up to 300

Up to 500 or 1000 participants

Participants List 

Visible to all participants  

Visible to Host and Panelist 

Email Reminders 


If registration is enabled


In-Meeting Chat

Webinar Chat 





File Transfer 






Polling for Meetings

Polling for Webinars


Facebook, YouTube, Workplace by Facebook, Custom Streaming Service 

Facebook, YouTube, Workplace by Facebook, Custom Streaming Service


Registration for Meetings

Registration for Webinars

Closed Captioning 




Breakout Rooms 



Require Password to Join

*Note: If the host or co-host enables "Allow to Talk" for an attendee, they will have access to enable their microphone as well as mute and unmute themselves.

Request a webinar license

To host a Webinar, you’ll first need to contact Media Services at media_services@emerson.edu to request a license. We’ll need the following information to process your request:

  • Date of the webinar event, as well as 1-2 separate days in advance of your event so you can set up and test the webinar (recommended at least two weeks in advance).
  • The number of attendees you expect.  We offer 500 or 1000 capacity licenses.
  • Who is creating/hosting the Webinar, so we know who to assign the webinar license to (one person only).
  • Whether or not this is a recurring Webinar.


Registration for Webinars

Scheduling a webinar with registration requires your registrants to complete a brief form before receiving the link to join your webinar. This allows you to collect the names, email addresses, and other information from the registrants. You can choose to automatically approve anyone who registers or manually approve attendees.

Attendees can only register for your webinar while you have the webinar license. Due to limited availability, we may not be able to let you hold onto a webinar license between the day you create the webinar and the day your webinar happens. In this case, your attendees wouldn't be able to register for your event until the day of the webinar, so we recommend booking a webinar license in advance as soon as possible.

If you're unable to use Zoom Registration due to this, we recommend using another platform for your attendees to register through, such as EventBrite, Ticket Tailor, or other event registration platform software.



Still need help?

For questions or requests, such as booking a webinar license, please contact helpdesk@emerson.edu, or call us at 617-824-8080.

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