Video in Teaching and Learning- Part 2
Written by Sherry Lo and Jill Lyall, ANU Online
In Part 1 of this Coffee Course on using videos, we provided an overview of a range of tools that you can use to shoot and create your own video course materials. We gave an outline of some ways to shoot video then edit and produce the footage. Today we are going to provide more detailed, hands-on instructions on using some of these tools, and provide links to relevant help resources.
Capturing video footage
We will concentrate on how to use Echo360 Personal Capture, desktop webcam, Adobe Connect, mobile devices and One Button Studio at ANU, for taking video footage of yourself or others talking, or a screen on which you may be wanting to show a PowerPoint presentation, documents, images, or websites. We will also look at converting PowerPoint presentations to movies.
Ways to record your own talk to your students
Switch on your mic and webcam on your desktop and away you go.
This is the most straight forward way to record yourself talking to your students. It is suitable for very short introductions, such as simply greeting your students and welcoming them to the course. You can edit this and add in slides and other materials if you wish, but a simple video recording of your greeting will be a welcome personal touch to your online course. Save the recording as an mp4 file and it can be added to your course (we will be discussing ways of sharing video footage on Day’s 4 and 5 of this course).
Most laptops have webcams built in these days but if you are working on a PC or a laptop without a built in camera, you can purchase a webcam fairly cheaply and it is connected via USB port and is placed on the top of your screen. How you get your webcam started and operate it will depend on what device and operating system you are using.
There are certain apps that will open your webcam for you, some of which are covered below. But you can also simply record footage of yourself talking, from the desktop. Go here to see how I did this from a Windows PC using Windows 8.1 Enterprise System.
Echo360 Personal Capture
This will provide you with more options than a simple webcam on your desk top, although you will still use the same equipment. Echo360 Personal Capture allows you to capture your screen, as well as your “talking head.” You may leave it as a simple “talking head” introduction, or you may use the clip and add in other clips, using a video editor, that switch between a slide show or an on-screen demonstration or website, and your talking head. Go here to see a screen recording of how to use Echo360 Personal capture to record yourself.
Use your phone or tablet to record yourself and/or others.
The simplest way of course is the hand-held phone or tablet with “facetime” camera on. However it is also possible to set up your phone or camera with a simple tripod and film yourself sitting relaxed on a lounge chair, or a relaxed interview with others. (More on this tomorrow!) Some of this was covered in Day 4, “Screen and tablet recording”.
Creating video footage from your PowerPoint presentations
In Windows 10 and later, it is easy to create a video from your PowerPoint slides. It is worth it, though, to consider, when you are designing your presentation, how it will look best as a video. You will add your voice to each slide so lots of text should be unnecessary. Use lots of visual elements and use your voice to put across key concepts.
Here is an example by Dr Tambri Housen in the Masters of Population Health: Introduction to Analysis of Survey Data
Try it yourself! Create some interesting, visually attractive PowerPoint presentations with a voice-over, and then save them as MP4 files which will run as videos in your course. Go here for a step by step guide to making your PPT presentation into a video.
This is another way that you can record yourself giving a talk, and also include a slide show, visits to websites, notes and file attachments. This is available in some higher education institutions for web conferencing, but it can also be used to self-record lectures with slides and screen-sharing. To learn more about Adobe Connect and its tools, go to the Adobe Connect Community site. Recording a session in an empty Adobe Connect virtual room, with PowerPoint presentations and drawings, screen share or web display, will provide you with a recorded lesson that displays on the Moodle page where your Adobe Connect session is linked. Students can view the lesson by clicking on the link. Unfortunately, there is no straight forward way of downloading the recording for further editing and uploading in a different format, and you would need to simply direct your students to access it on the Moodle page where the Adobe Connect room is linked.
Fully equipped video recording studio. Yes, not many academics have ready access to such a thing or know how to operate it! However many universities are now making available simple self-help recording rooms for lecturers to record videos. At ANU we have recently been provided with a “One Button” studio that has all of the correct lighting, camera positioning and recording equipment set up to go at the press of a button. So you can simply press the button and record yourself (or others if you wish to interview), then save the recording on to a USB drive to upload later to your course. Here is a video we used in part one of this coffee course, by Dr. Katie Freund, about using One Button Studio.
As you can see from what we have outlined above and linked to for further detail, there are many tools readily available to you for personal video creation. There is much to learn, but we are all learning when it comes to this technology! Try any of these out, and practice using your favourite tools to build up confidence in using these forms of communication in your teaching.
Have you tried any of these tools to create videos that are screen recordings, or videos of yourself talking to your students? What were the pro’s and cons of those you have tried? If you have produced a video using any of these tool and can share a link with us to view, please feel free to do so!
It could be argued that these tools are simply new forms of communication and information sharing, and as such we need to develop some skills to use at least some of them. Do you agree with this argument, or do you think this type of technology should be left to multimedia experts?
Post your responses in the forum.
Join us for a face-to-face session
Friday, 8 September, 12-1pm, Chancelry Building #10, 10 East Road – meet in the Lobby
We invite you to a hands-on session where you can learn more about and practise presenting on camera in the SCAPA Professional Media Studio. Jamie Kidston from SCAPA will also be on hand to share his tips. Please RSVP to: Karlene.email@example.com if you are able to attend. View the campus map for directions.
Echo360 Service page at ANU
Adobe Connect Community site.