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How to Make Excellent Video Lectures

Please note the above is not intended as an example of a video lecture, excellent or otherwise. It is merely a recording of yesterday's workshop, a Zoom meeting. Nevertheless we hope it will be helpful for those who were unable to attend.

You'll find this video and other resources in support of yesterday's workshop on the CAT+FD wiki.

Between hurricanes and pandemics, video lectures may be more important than ever to your teaching. Fortunately we have a workshop and also some software for you.

Bart Everson is conducting a timely workshop on "How to Make Excellent Video Lectures." With today’s technology tools, anyone can make a video lecture. This workshop will provide you with step-by-step instructions to make your video lectures excellent.

[Camtasia Logo]

Furthermore, Xavier has secured a site license for all faculty to have immediate access to Camtasia.

For those just tuning in, Camtasia is a tool for making videos by recording from your screen and camera. A common use for teachers is to record short lectures. Many Xavier faculty will be familiar with this software already. In recent years, you may even have come to the fifth floor of the Library to use the CAT+FD Camtasia Studio.

Under the current pandemic conditions, we all have limited access to facilities, and our Camtasia Studio is not open for general use. CAT+FD advocated for a site license so that faculty can use Camtasia on their laptops, desktops, and other devices, wherever they may be. Many thanks to the office of the Vice-President for Academic Affairs for approving this purchase!

So what are you waiting for? Yes, you can download and install Camtasia now. Here's the link.

Please note: You will need to our freshly-minted Camtasia License key to unlock the software beyond the free trial period. To get the key, please contact me, Bart Everson. You can send me an email or use this form.

Smart phone with Zoom app on the screen

The Zoom Video Conferencing software allows instructors to record classes and meetings to their local computer or to the Zoom Cloud Recording Storage. While some users may find recording to the Zoom Cloud Recording Storage to be easy and convenient, the Zoom Cloud Recording Storage was NOT meant to be a long term video storage solution.

Our Information Technology Center's current policy is to keep 2 - 3 semesters of archived Zoom cloud recordings in the system before the recordings are deleted. You may recall that earlier this month, ITC announced that Zoom cloud recordings that were recorded on or before December 31, 2019 would be deleted from the Zoom Cloud Recording Storage. Therefore, my suggestion for Zoom cloud recordings that you plan to use from semester-to-semester is that you download them and then upload the video recording to a video sharing service (like YouTube or Vimeo).

Everyone at Xavier has a YouTube account. Videos uploaded to your YouTube account will not be deleted. You can make your YouTube videos unlisted or private if you do not want people to be able to search the Internet and find your videos. You can embed or create a link to your YouTube videos in your Brightspace courses.

ICYMI, we have a site license for Camtasia. Camtasia is a tool for making videos by recording from your screen and camera. Camtasia can also be useful if you want to edit your downloaded video recordings. Read more about requesting a copy of Camtasia in Bart's You’ve Got Camtasia blog post.

Want more information?

Download Zoom Cloud Recording (pdf)
Record, Upload, and Share Video on YouTube
Private Video Sharing on YouTube
Embed a YouTube Video in a Content Module

Zoom How-to Resources for Faculty
Zoom How-to Resources for Students

View all the Brightspace training recaps
Instructors Quick Start Tutorial
Continuous Delivery release notes
Brightspace Known Issues
Request a sandbox course
Sign-up for Brightspace training sessions
You can find Brightspace help at D2L's website.
Join the Brightspace Community.
Try these Brightspace How-To documents.
Visit our Brightspace FAQs for additional Brightspace information
or schedule a one-on-one session, email, or
call Janice Florent: (504) 520-7418.

Note: Are you doing something innovative in Brightspace or perhaps you've discovered a handy tip? Share how you are using Brightspace in your teaching and learning in The Orange Room.

Image credit: image by antonbe from Pixabay

Video is one of the most powerful, motivating, and visual ways to learn. You can use videos to promote critical thinking and active learning.

There's a big difference between watching a video and learning something from it.

Emily A. Moore, M.Ed., instructional designer in the online learning office at Texas State Technical College – Harlingen Campus, gives suggestions to help increase the educational effectiveness of an online course video. Read more in her article, "From Passive Viewing to Online Learning: Simple Techniques for Applying Active Learning Strategies to Online Course Videos."

Additionally, you can ask students to create videos to demonstrate learning. If you are interested how to use videos to demonstrate learning, read my “Video Assignments” blog post.

PowerPoint slide with a video assignment

Video can easily and effectively be incorporated inside your Brightspace courses to provide just-in-time feedback and/or to build in spontaneous interaction.

There are several ways to add videos to your Brightspace courses. Brightspace supports embedding and/or linking to video from many other systems and solutions. Sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, or other video repositories can be embedded easily by clicking the Insert Stuff button in the HTML Editor, choosing the Enter Embed Code option from the list, and then pasting the embed code.

image showing Embed Video using HTML code

The benefit of embedding video into a course is that it enables the students to stay within the context of the course and within the sequence of instruction, rather than linking out away from course content.

It is a good idea to embed or link to videos rather than uploading video files to your course. You can upload your videos to YouTube, Vimeo, or other media server and then embed or link to the video within the course as explained above. Detailed instructions on recording, uploading, and sharing videos on YouTube can be found in the "Want more information?" section below.

Lastly, you can create Video Notes in Brightspace. Video Notes is a built-in media recording tool that allows instructors and learners to record short videos (up to 3 minutes) with a webcam. This makes it easy to personalize the learning experience with short, video-based feedback, comments, or instructions. Video Notes can be added where video attachments are supported and when the HTML Editor’s Insert Stuff option is available.

Want more information?

Simple Techniques for Applying Active Learning Strategies to Videos
Best Practices for Posting Video Announcements
Video Assignments
Record, Upload, and Share Video on YouTube

Create Video Notes
Create and insert a Video Note in HTML Editor
Understanding the HTML Editor

View all the Brightspace training recaps
Brightspace Known Issues
Continuous Delivery release notes
Request a sandbox course
Sign-up for Brightspace training sessions
You can find Brightspace help at D2L's website.
Join the Brightspace Community.
Try these Brightspace How-To documents.
Visit our Brightspace FAQs for additional Brightspace information
or schedule a one-on-one session, email, or
call Janice Florent: (504) 520-7418.

Note: Are you doing something innovative in Brightspace or perhaps you've discovered a handy tip? Share how you are using Brightspace in your teaching and learning in The Orange Room.

1

clap board

Traditional writing assignments are appropriate for many types of assessments, but there is no law that says traditional writing assignments are required for all.

In a Faculty Focus article, Dr. John Orlando explains how student videos can be used to demonstrate learning. He writes,

A good video assignment is to put students into small groups with instructions to make a video that teaches a key concept related to class. If done well, the video not only demonstrates students’ understanding of the concept, but also serves as a resource that can be used by others.

Recent technologies have made video creation remarkably easy and video assignments can be shared in Brightspace. However, you should opt to have the students upload their video files to a video sharing site like YouTube and just provide a link to the video inside Brightspace.

If you are interested in video assignments, you can read more in Dr. Orlando’s “Ask Your Students to Create Videos to Demonstrate Learning” article.

Additionally, I prepared some instructions for recording, uploading, and sharing video on YouTube that you should provide to your students to help them post a link to their video in Brightspace.

Image credit: Image by Mediamodifier from Pixabay

A crowd of faculty joined us back in November for Dr. Suzanne Goodney Lea's fascinating workshop on "Engaging Students in Research: Lessons from Collecting Police Use of Deadly Force Data," presented by CAT+FD in partnership with the Center for Undergraduate Research.

If you missed the workshop, or if you'd like to review it, you're in luck, because it's one of the first presentations we've recorded with our shiny new Swivl.

Swivl

What's that, you ask. Why, it's the latest rotating robotic lecture-capture wonder-gizmo. It's truly slick, and must be seen in action to be fully appreciated.

We don't have the fancy Swivl Pro account which would allow embedding the video right here in our blog, but never fear! It's just a click away:

cloud.swivl.com/v/3c94db49eb75eabdc185a8770ddc4280

Note: There were some audio recording problems. We are not sure why the audio recording level dropped midway through. It is still audible but you may need to adjust your speakers. Our stalwart Technology Coordinator is in the process of contacting Swivl Tech Support to find out what they think may have gone wrong.

Many thanks to Dr. Lea for giving her permission to be our guinea pig.

By all means, let us know what you think!

by Janice Florent

a wall of video images

Video is one of the most powerful, motivating, and visual ways to learn. Videos can be used to promote critical thinking and active learning. The use of videos in education has become a lot more mainstream due to the accessibility and ease of use of equipment and software, but also due to the growing realization of the pedagogic benefits of video content.

In a recent Technology Enhanced Learning article, Phil Vincent suggested ten ways to use video in education. Those suggestions are:

  1. Record content for an online or ‘flipped’ course
  2. Record an interview
  3. Create a video introduction to a course or topic
  4. Create a screencast demonstrating a tool, technique, process, or software
  5. Record lectures/presentations for revision
  6. Capture a recording with a green screen or PowerPoint slides
  7. Create a microlecture
  8. Record assessment guidelines for students
  9. Review/present a journal article or text book
  10. Record module evaluation feedback

In Phil’s article “10 Ways to Use Video in Your Teaching” he provides examples of each of these. If you are interested in seeing examples of any of these refer to the article.

Additionally, it is best practice to include transcripts and closed captions with your videos. Many people believe closed captioning and transcripts only benefits students who have a hearing impairment or have a language deficit. This could not be further from the truth. Closed captioning and transcripts can also help students with cognitive disabilities, as well as learners accessing videos in noise sensitive environments, learners accessing the internet with low bandwidth or with a limited data plan, and basically all learners. Presenting information in multiple ways can help address the diverse needs of learners in the classroom and engage students on multiple levels.

Attend the upcoming "Creating Accessible Course Materials: Transcripts and Closed Captions" workshop to find out how to make your videos accessible.

Video is one of the most powerful, motivating, and visual ways to learn. You can use videos to promote critical thinking and active learning.

There's a big difference between watching a video and learning something from it.

Emily A. Moore, M.Ed., instructional designer in the online learning office at Texas State Technical College – Harlingen Campus, gives suggestions to help increase the educational effectiveness of an online course video. Read more in her article, "From Passive Viewing to Online Learning: Simple Techniques for Applying Active Learning Strategies to Online Course Videos."

Video can easily and effectively be incorporated inside your Blackboard courses to provide just-in-time feedback and/or to build in spontaneous interaction.

You can ask students to create videos to demonstrate learning. If you are interested how to use videos to demonstrate learning, read my “Video Assignments” blog post. This blog post also covers how students should go about linking to their videos in Blackboard.

PowerPoint slide with a video assignment

There are several ways to add videos to your Blackboard courses. Blackboard supports embedding and/or linking to video from many other systems and solutions. Sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, or other video repositories can be embedded easily by switching to html mode in the Content Editor and then pasting in the embed code.

image showing Embed Video using HTML code

The benefit of embedding video into a course is that it enables the students to stay within the context of the course and within the sequence of instruction, rather than linking out away from course content.

Another way to add video to your course is to upload the video file (i.e., MPEG/AVI, QuickTime, Flash/Shockwave, Microsoft .asf and .wmv formats).

Video files are generally large files. Each Blackboard course has a 1.25 GB maximum course size limit. Your course size is total of your uploaded video files sizes along with the size of all other course content, including content uploaded into your course by your students.

It is a good idea to embed or link to videos rather than uploading video files to your course to help you to stay within the maximum course size limit. You can upload your videos to YouTube, Vimeo, or other media server and then embed or link to the video within the course as explained above. Detailed instructions on recording, uploading, and sharing videos on YouTube can be found in the "Want more information?" section below.

image showing Build Content

When adding video files, it is a good idea to include links to any browser plug-ins or media player files that users will need to view the videos.

Note: Video Everywhere, which previously allowed you to upload YouTube videos directly into the Content Editor, is temporarily unavailable due to a change in the Google authentication process. Blackboard is working on a fix for this. We don't have any word on when this feature will be available again.

Want more information?

Simple Techniques for Applying Active Learning Strategies to Videos
Best Practices for Posting Video Announcements
Creating Mashups
Embed Videos into Your Course
How to Create Audio, Image, and Video Links
Video Assignments
Record, Upload, and Share Video on YouTube
Explore Blackboard’s On Demand Learning Center.
Try these Blackboard How-To documents.
Visit the Blackboard FAQs for additional blackboard information
or schedule a one-on-one session, email, or
call Janice Florent: (504) 520-7418.

by Bart Everson

Many teachers know about the power of storytelling in the college classroom. You might start class with a personal story, which helps you connect with your students, or helps your students connect with the course content. You might even get your students telling stories to one another.

Less well known, perhaps, is the power of digital storytelling — of using digital technology to tell stories. This takes a little more doing, but with today's tools it's not as hard as it might seem. Write a script, record your voice, throw in some photos and background music — voilà!

As an an example, I'd like to point you to The Joy of Summer by Lisa Garza.

For teachers, this can be a new avenue for delivering your own stories to your students. It can also be an exciting assignment for your students; properly integrated into the course as a whole and combined with reflection, it can lead to a truly transformative experience.

Of course, there are some great resources to help you get started. The Center for Digital Storytelling is the premier organization that has championed this new form. You'll also want to check out Educational Uses of Digital Storytelling from the University of Houston.

If you’d like CAT to offer a workshop on this topic, leave a comment.

1

by Janice Florent

image of film strip and clapboard

Traditional writing assignments are appropriate for many types of assessments, but there is no law that says traditional writing assignments are required for all.

In a Faculty Focus article, Dr. John Orlando explains how student videos can be used to demonstrate learning. He writes,

A good video assignment is to put students into small groups with instructions to make a video that teaches a key concept related to class. If done well, the video not only demonstrates students’ understanding of the concept, but also serves as a resource that can be used by others.

Recent technologies have made video creation remarkably easy and video assignments can be shared in Blackboard. However, you should opt to have the students upload their video files to a video sharing site like YouTube and just provide a link to the video inside Blackboard. The reason for this is your Blackboard courses have a 1.25 GB course size limit. This course size limit includes all content the instructor uploads as well as all content uploaded by the students. Most video files are large and you will find that if students attempted to upload their videos into your course you will reach your course size limit rather quickly.

If you are interested in video assignments, you can read more in Dr. Orlando’s “Ask Your Students to Create Videos to Demonstrate Learning” article.

Additionally, I prepared some instructions for recording, uploading, and sharing video on YouTube that you should provide to your students to help them post a link to their video in Blackboard.