A leading global educational institution and one of the top universities in Hong Kong, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) is committed to delivering a modern learning experience for its more than 28,000 students.
For years the eLearning Development and Support Section (eLDSS) in the Educational Development Centre (EDC) at PolyU had sought to use video for lecture capture, meeting recording, and staff development, but hadn’t yet found a solution that would work well to support staff and students.
Meanwhile, the demand from PolyU students and staff for a video solution had reached a tipping point. Students wanted access to lecture recordings as a study aid. Instructors, too, had a growing list of ways they wanted to use video, including adopting new blended learning pedagogies like the flipped classroom, engaging students with more active learning approaches, and providing better feedback on assignments that would help students improve faster.
The time was right for PolyU to find a video solution that could support a wide range of teaching and learning initiatives across campus.
After again reviewing their options for lecture capture and video management solutions, this time PolyU chose to adopt Panopto’s video platform as its campus video solution. Panopto would not only make it easy for everyone to record videos, but also had everything the university needed to support a wide spectrum of teaching and learning initiatives.
A flexible video recording solution was of utmost importance to PolyU as it would enable staff to produce their own videos from anywhere. Instructors simply open Panopto on their computers and press record. Now whether they’re in the front of the classroom, in the office, or at home, PolyU faculty can quickly create the video content they need, using the laptops and built-in webcams they already have.
Designed for educators, Panopto’s video platform enables PolyU staff to do much more than just record videos. Instructors have access to Panopto’s intuitive video editing tools that make polishing up and even updating video learning content simple. Panopto’s video platform also includes native support for interactive quizzing, so instructors can engage students throughout their videos and reinforce key concepts.
With support for video accessibility built into Panopto, PolyU can also ensure that all students on campus will have equal access to video learning materials. Every video uploaded to Panopto is automatically captioned with machine-generated captions. And along with captioning, Panopto’s video player supports screen readers and keyboard navigation as well.
Prior to implementing Panopto, PolyU had been using a combination of Blackboard (the institution’s learning management system) and YouTube to host and share course videos with students. Both solutions had drawbacks, however.
As an LMS, Blackboard wasn’t designed to support large video files. Working around this required a lot of extra work from staff, who would have to work through the technical processes required to compress or break up their video recordings in order to make them small enough to share.
With YouTube, faculty had found uploading classroom videos was much easier. Sharing those videos, however, was a greater challenge. Videos were often shared publicly or semi-publicly,
and the PolyU team had no means to manage or secure them.
With Panopto, PolyU was able to centralize all of its video content into a single, secure video content management system (video CMS) that not only made it easy to manage permissions for videos down to the course level, but it also made uploading and sharing videos effortless. Every video recorded with Panopto is automatically uploaded to PolyU’s video library, where it’s optimized for playback on any device. Existing videos can be added with a simple drag-and-drop. Best of all, Panopto also integrated with Blackboard, enabling students to find their recordings in the same place they already go for course content — without requiring extra steps from staff.
PolyU students were perhaps most excited about Panopto’s video search capabilities. While their recorded lectures often captured an hour or more of information as a single video, Panopto’s inside-video search ability could help students quickly locate the relevant moments and discussions they wanted to replay for revision. Panopto automatically indexes every word spoken and shown on-screen in every video uploaded to PolyU’s video CMS, enabling students to instantly fast-forward right to the information they need.
Finally, with Panopto’s video analytics dashboard, administrators and instructors had the ability to dig into video-based learning and gain valuable insights into everything from student engagement with specific videos to campus-wide viewing statistics. This would enable academics to understand where students were most engaged with course content, as well as where they were dropping off. Further, the data would give administrators a bird’s-eye view of how video is being used on campus, so they could assess how the new system was helping them meet broader goals.
Ian Brown, a Senior Educational Development Officer at PolyU, has been on the team overseeing the implementation of Panopto.
“To put it simply, Panopto helped us do things we’ve wanted to do for many years,“ said Mr. Brown.
Here are just a few of the ways the university has been using Panopto’s video platform to better engage students and also to expand learning for staff:
Mr. Brown notes that he’s received extensive positive feedback about Panopto from instructors, students, and administrators. “Already even more people are using Panopto than we initially expected,” he remarked.
Panopto has become an important part of PolyU’s efforts to modernize its learning environment. Not only does Panopto’s video platform seamlessly integrate video into the university’s existing systems, but its robust features also make it possible for PolyU to implement more modern pedagogies that will help to enhance student learning experiences and ultimately pave the way for improved student outcomes.
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University is one of the top research universities in Hong Kong. Serving its mission to nurture critical thinkers, effective communicators, innovative problem solvers, and socially responsible global citizens, PolyU prides itself on challenging boundaries and uncovering knowledge that benefits mankind. The institution’s groundbreaking research and innovations have helped to improve human life, boost economic efficiency, and bring positive change to Hong Kong and the world.
While PolyU boasts a history of 8 decades, the university continues to move with the times to address the increasingly demanding expectations of today’s world. Ranked among the top 200 universities worldwide by Times Higher Education, PolyU serves more than 28,000 full-time students.