• Academic Technology

Using Panopto for reflective student assessment

At the University of West London, Panopto (known on campus as UWL Replay) is used for lecture capture and for individual recordings, both by staff and students. Nathan Vasanthan from London Geller College of Hospitality and Tourism has found it very effective for reflective assessment in one of his modules.

As part of the Modern Patisserie Techniques module in BA Food and Professional Cookery course, students are required to give a 10-minute demonstration of their skills in pastry techniques and submit a critical reflection on their performance using video recordings of their presentations and written instructor- and peer-feedback.

Cooking students use Panopto to record student assignments for their teachers Each student’s presentation was recorded using the Panopto Recorder and the recordings were shared with individual students through Blackboard.

Feedback and reflection play a vital role in mastering professional skills, both in FE and HE. Recordings made in UWL Replay are used to help students evaluate their performance and facilitate self-reflection. Watching their performance allows learners to look at themselves from a distance and form a more realistic picture of their skills, thus helping with skills acquisition and improvement. Also, the design of the assessment facilitates student ownership of their learning and individual responsibility.

Before we started using Panopto to make and share the videos, students’ presentations had been made using an external video camera or a web cam, and made available to students for viewing and reflection on USB sticks. This posed various problems related to transferring video files from a portable device to the PC and then to students’ USB sticks one at a time. It was time consuming and there were other issues involved such as students losing their memory sticks or not being able to play the recordings. A new, more viable solution was needed.

The Modern Patisserie Techniques module on BA Food and Professional Cookery course is taught in professionally-equipped training kitchens where students develop their culinary skills. The kitchens are equipped with video cameras and microphones located above a presentation table at the front of the room, a PC and flat screens. The PCs have the Personal Recorder installed. This proved to be a very effective set-up, and the recordings could be made simply by pressing a key on the PC keyboard.

After the presentations, the tutor shared the recordings with the students by moving them to their individual folders in Panopto. Students could access them through Blackboard by clicking a link in the module menu.

The use of Panopto eliminated or at least minimised some of the issues that had been experienced previously. The videos are uploaded to a Panopto folder automatically, saving time, and are available for viewing almost immediately. The PPT presentation is integrated with the video. The file sharing, if done correctly, complies with data protection and confidentiality.

The feedback from students was very positive: they saw the value of watching the recordings to improve their performance and found them useful for developing professional and career-related skills. The access to the recordings was very easy, and all the students watched them and submitted their reflective reports on time – which had been a rare occurrence before the Panopto workflow was introduced.

In July 2016, Nathan Vasanthan (LGCHT) and Agata Sadza (INSTIL) delivered a presentation at the Panopto Regional Conference in Derby on using Panopto for reflective assessment in Culinary Arts. You can see his presentation embedded below.