Using Video as an Effective Tool for Teaching and Learning

With the popularity of flipped classrooms and online courses, the usefulness of video as an effective tool for teaching and learning has gained prevalence in many university communities. The planning, practice, and production that goes into a well-developed video project can greatly improve the quality of the finished product, resulting in a more powerfully directed learning outcome, and advancing a professor’s ability to reach students in progressive and innovative ways.

When deciding to use video as a tool of instruction, it is very important to consider the best ways to adapt your instruction to a new medium. Often very slight and subtle changes made to the structure and delivery of course materials can yield impressive and dynamic results. Working with video professionals and instructional designers who are familiar with many of the best practices and practical techniques in video-based learning can help an individual to become more comfortable, and adapt more easily to working in a video production environment. Stylized script writing, increased confidence in front of the camera, variations in the style of speech and dress, new advancements in lively motion graphics, the ease of controlled studio and on-location shooting, and improved audio and camera equipment, can all go a long way in creating more effective video that will engage students, hold their interest in the subject matter, and in the best cases, inspire them to pursue their own learning pathways.

Working together with a team to develop a video involves scheduling time to rehearse, adapt, and rework the overall course materials, then planning the setting and design, practicing and refining the delivery, and editing and combining everything together to produce a consistent finished product. It doesn’t take a great deal of time when you are working with a team, but the more time you spend planning your video project, the better it will be.

Instructional videos should have the best possible visuals, and these visuals should contribute to the instructional message of your course. For example, what kind of charts should you include in your video? Will you need to obtain copyright to use the charts, or can you create a unique visual representation of the material that highlights what you want to convey? Maybe you could challenge your students to create the charts and then use the best charts in your video. Where should your video footage be filmed? Can you film the footage in a place that makes a deeper connection to whatever you are teaching? For example, if you are teaching an economics class, would be it be possible to film at least a portion of your video in a bank, or in an industrial setting? Standard lecture capture is too often dull and uninspiring. Raise the bar for the instructional content you provide to your students. You might find that you have a knack for creating exceptional instructional videos.



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