Create Breakout Rooms in Teams Meetings

Breakout rooms allow a meeting organizer to split your attendees into multiple online rooms for discussion and collaboration in Microsoft Teams.

To use breakout rooms in a Teams meeting, you must be the meeting organizer of a new or existing Teams meeting.

Creating Breakout Rooms

  1. Using the Microsoft Teams desktop software, join your meeting and select the breakout rooms icon.

    Breakout Rooms icon

  2. A prompt appears to create breakout rooms. Select the number of breakout rooms to create. You can create up to 50 breakout rooms.

    Select the number of Breakout Rooms

  3. Choose how you want participants assigned to rooms. If you select automatically, Microsoft Teams will place the participants into the rooms at random. If you select manually, you can assign participants to specific rooms. For the next steps, manual breakout rooms assignment will be shown. If you select the automatically option, skip to Step 7.

    Click or tap the Create rooms button to continue.

    Manually assigned Breakout Rooms

  4. Microsoft Teams starts creating the breakout rooms. After a moment, you are prompted to assign participants to breakout rooms.

    A) Hover over the name of the participant to reveal the person's checkbox and select the checkbox.

    B) The assign room drop-down menu appears. Select a room for this participant. You can hover over each participant then check the checkbox, allowing you to select multiple persons to add them all to a single breakout room at once.

    Assign Breakout Rooms

  5. When done with manual assignment, click or tap the Assign button.

    Select Assign

  6. You will be asked to move participants to the breakout rooms. Click or tap Move.

    Move to Breakout Rooms

  7. Microsoft Teams assigns the participants into breakout rooms.

    If you want to rename the rooms...

    1. Hover your cursor over a room.
    2. Click or tap the three-dots/more actions icon that appears then select rename room.
    3. A prompt appears to give the room a new name. Enter the new name.
    4. Click or tap Rename room.
    Note that the rooms listed in the right column are closed. If you want a timer for breakout rooms, see Setting a Time Limit for Breakout Rooms. The timer needs to be set before you open the breakout rooms.

    Click or tap the Open button to open the breakout rooms.

    Open Breakout Rooms

  8. The participants leave the main meeting and join their assigned breakout room meetings. As the meeting organizer, you remain in the main meeting. Members will stay assigned to Breakout Rooms for all subsequent sessions of that meeting or reoccurring meetings.

    To join a breakout room meeting...

    Hover your cursor over a room. Click or tap the three-dots/more actions icon that appears then select join room.

    Join Breakout Room

    When you leave a breakout room meeting...

    Note that you return to the main meeting on hold. Be sure to click or tap the Resume button to end your on hold status and rejoin the main meeting.

    Resume main meeting

Setting a Time Limit for Breakout Rooms

The Breakout Rooms Timer automatically moves members back to main meeting. While the rooms are closed, the meeting organizer can set the timer in Breakout Rooms by following these steps:

  1. From the Breakout rooms panel, click or tap the gear icon to reveal the Room Settings menu.

    Breakout Rooms settings

  2. Click or tap the toggle to activate "Set a time limit."

    Breakout Rooms time limit
  3. Choose a time limit from the hours and minutes drop-down menus.
  4. Click or tap < Settings to return to the Breakout rooms panel.

Seeing issues with Breakout Rooms?

If you encounter any issues with Breakout Rooms, please contact the IT Services TechSquad.