#DLNchat: How Can Video Best Support Learning and Instruction?
With smartphone cameras in so many pockets, for many of us, creating videos has become as common as watching them. But not everyone has the same access to streaming or producing video content. So when we bring video into the learning process, how can we best utilize it to support learning and instruction for all? This past Tuesday, March 13 the #DLNchat community got together to discuss, quote some Richard Mayer and, of course, share some videos.
Many in the #DLNchat community felt strongly that the use of video should be considered a complement to other mechanisms of learning and not strictly as a substitute for lecture or content delivery. As Ryan Straight said, “Everything should be considered complementary. Everything. (Corrolary: unilateral instruction is never enough.)”
We heard about a lot different uses for video, such as peer-to-peer information sharing, dynamic complements to static information, options for multimodal learning, demonstrations of student knowledge and as a tool for student-faculty interaction. While those working in online classes and face-to-face classes leaned more heavily on some uses than others, everyone agreed the methods above could be applied in some capacity. Partly because making video has become easier, faculty, students and instructional designers can consider its use for a variety of impact.
Cali Morisson reminded us, “The magic comes in not simply taking a lecture and making it a video, it comes in making content relevant for students, no matter its format. Video can be engaging or dreadful…” So what kind of design process should drive video production for learning? And is any of that “Hollywood glitz” necessary to make instructional videos engaging?
Most #DLNchat-ters piped in to say “glitz’ was not as important as the quality of content and, to use a Hollywood term borrowed by Nick Noel, the “pre-production” process. He went on to explain, “Make sure you have a clear idea what you want to say, how you want to present it, and the environment you’re going to record in.” But others, like Darin Gray felt “you need the glitz, too. Great content doesn’t matter if no one watches or interacts with the video.” Rebecca Heiser agreed that “high-quality video production is necessary in online learning environments. Quite often in low-quality and outdated videos, students lose interest and find poor-quality production elements to be distracting.” However she feels it isn’t production flair that contributes to quality. Instead, she says instructional designers should be responsible to ensure videos meet those expectations.
Other folks are involved too, like the people in the videos. Who should present information in instructional videos? Strayer has reported great success using professional actors in their videos. However, apart from the prohibitive costs with using actors, many #DLNchat-ters felt it was important that faculty to be the star. As Kayla Jutzi said, “I believe faculty should absolutely be in their course videos, it shows that a real person, their course author, is behind all of the content they are receiving!”
That humanizing ability was what the #DLNchat community agreed made video for learning most effective, more than considerations about retention of information as related to length or dynamic visuals. As Paul Wilson articulated, “Live lecture is becoming less sage-on-stage w student centered instruction. Video can give and complement learning modules in or out of lecture context.” A representative from WeVu put it this way, “Students are doing things more than producing videos. We’ve got to get past video as something produced for consumption and think of it for coaching, collaboration, creativity, dialogue!”
Join the Digital Learning Network to stay up to date on all events and the latest news for highered digital learning leaders! At our next #DLNchat, join special guest Bryan Fendley when we’ll discuss: How Could AI Shape the Future of Higher Education? Add it your Google calendar for Tuesday, March 23 at 1pm PT/ 4pm ET. #DLNchat is co-hosted by the Online Learning Consortium,WCET and Tyton Partners.