On campuses all over the world, the use of video for teaching and learning is growing at an astonishing rate. The number of teachers employing video-enhanced pedagogical approaches such as flipped classrooms and blended learning continue to rise. According to a 2014 study from Sophia.org and the Flipped Learning Network, 78% of teachers have flipped a lesson, a 20% increase from just two years prior.
However, for all the interest in video-enabled learning, some schools find that some professors are hesitant to adopt the new medium in their classrooms. It’s a problem that we encounter from time to time with our clients, so we were excited to find this article by Ioanna Opidee at University Business detailing best practices for incorporating video into courses campus-wide.
As the article notes, getting hesitant faculty onboard is one of the biggest hurdles to launching a campus-wide video strategy. The key to overcoming this challenge is giving instructors ample opportunities to learn how the technology works and what benefits can be reaped by using it. Offering workshops and one-on-one training sessions can go a long way in creating buzz around the new pedagogical tool, and enables your professors to get hands-on experience in an environment where you or a member of your team is available to answer questions if needed.
Recording training sessions using your lecture capture system is another way to get your faculty familiar with the new software. Allowing your professors to access their own training in this way enables them to get a student’s perspective of the technology, in addition to giving you the opportunity to show off your system’s most compelling learning features. Incorporate features into your training video like multi-camera recording, interactive viewing, and screen capture to give your faculty a feel for what the new system can offer.
For many faculty members, the process of recording in-class lectures or flipped classroom videos may be new, and the use of an end-to-end solution for automatically capturing and sharing videos will simplify adoption. Other instructors may already be recording flipped classroom videos with tools like Camtasia, or using presentation software other than PowerPoint like Apple Keynote or Prezi.
In cases like these, it’s important to ensure that professors can continue using the tools they’re already familiar with. Specifically, offer faculty the option of using their capture software of choice and make it easy for them to upload their videos into your school’s video content management system. Modern video platforms like Panopto make it easy for faculty to drag and drop video files into the school’s video management system, where the recordings are automatically encoded for playback on any device. Similarly, allow faculty to use their existing presentation software, and ensure that the video platform supports the ability to capture all onscreen content regardless of whether it’s presented from PowerPoint, Prezi, or other presentation tools.
In order to instill instructor confidence and comfort with your lecture capture system, you’ll want to make sure that you’re providing sufficient support to faculty at every step of the recording process. Having a dedicated support resource to help instructors with everything from optimizing classroom audio setups to post-production support ensures that any hurdles can be quickly overcome.
Make sure your lecture capture system offers “safety nets” if a lecture recording fails. Creating duplicate recordings, as noted in the article, is one way to approach it. Panopto’s video platform continually replicates its entire system across multiple Amazon data centers in different geographic locations and on different electrical grids, so that customers hosting their video recordings in the cloud are protected against data center outages and always have redundant copies of their data available. In addition, Panopto uses a feature called Failsafe Recording, that protects against data loss in the unlikely event of an operating system crash, hardware failure, or power outage.
You’ll also want to make sure that your students get the best possible video playback experience, regardless of their internet connection speed. Choose a video platform that offers adaptive bitrate streaming, which detects a viewer’s network speed in real-time and adjusts the video quality accordingly. For viewers, this results in minimal buffering during playback, faster start time, and a good experience for both high- and low-bandwidth connections.
Many universities are extending the use of their video platforms beyond lecture capture. The University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business uses their existing classroom capture capabilities to help students improve their presentation skills. Students use the university’s existing laptops and Panopto video capture system to record presentations and automatically submit them to the professor for review via the school’s learning management system.
And at Butler University, students in their College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences record their interactions with patients using an iPad, and submit the recordings to their professors for assessment in addition to sharing the videos among classmates for feedback.
For additional best practices, check out the article at University Business.