Over the last week, I’ve been really busy with one of my projects in particular, which is to produce a series of short videos featuring both faculty members as well as students, that are designed to shed light on so-called hybrid approaches to teaching and learning. What does that mean? In essence, a hybrid approach to teaching and learning combines on-ground, in-class activities with online activities and discussions. Especially in the last couple of years, more and more attention has been given to this particular educational design, presumably because the explosive developments in digital information technologies and social media applications have caused people to spend more time online now than in the past. Naturally, academia doesn’t want to and also shouldn’t fall behind those developments. That being said, however, there are a number of challenges that need to be considered when blending offline with online education, as noted by Jesse Stommel, Founder and Director of Hybrid Pedagogy: A Digital Journal on Teaching & Technology:

“[The] challenge is not to merely replace (or offer substitutes for) face-to-face instruction, but to find new and innovative ways to engage students in the practice of learning. Hybrid pedagogy does not just describe an easy mixing of on-ground and online learning, but is about bringing the sorts of learning that happen in a physical place and the sorts of learning that happen in a virtual place into a more engaged and dynamic conversation.” (“Hybridity pt. 2: What is Hybrid Pedagogy?”)

So, our videos are designed to ease the process for both faculty and students to approach hybrid educational settings. And rather than putting forth a series of “how-to”-videos, we’ve decided to tackle this pedagogical concept by presenting a series of short anecdotes from experienced faculty members as well as students. I believe that a set of stories will make the whole experience much more relatable.

So much for content and context. With that being said, however, our content can only be as good as the quality of the production, particularly in terms of video and audio quality; taking those aspects into account is important because we typically find well-produced content a lot more credible. In turn, we experience bad video quality, bad audio quality, or a mix of both as distractions from the content. Even studies have shown that a video with even slightly distorted audio impedes the learning process because we need to use parts of our brain activity just to listen to the content through the distortion, similar to having to read through lots of typos in an academic paper or smudged printing of the pages.

So, below I’m going to share a few links that are not only helping me with my current project, but can help you when you consider creating videos for educational purposes:

MOOCing It: 10 Tips for Creating Compelling Video Content (great general tips)

What Happens to a YouTube Video After 1,000 Uploads? (an insightful take on what happens when you upload a video on a platform such as YouTube)

Video Making 101 – Good Sound Quality Is Essential (& how to do it) (pretty self-explanatory. Check it out!)

How to (and Why) Produce High Quality Audio for E-Learning (great tips to get you started)

Videography Tips (great general set of guidelines, including the “Seven Deadly Camcorder Sins”)

We’ve now scheduled the first interviews with faculty members who are willing to share their experiences. I’m very excited about the outcome, not only with regards to their stories but also when it comes to the quality of our production.

As mentioned in my first post, I also want to end my post with something valuable to share. This time I would like you to check out Lynda.com. It’s a great, subscription-based online resource with lots of tutorial videos that I’m sure you will find valuable. The platform not only features video tutorials for specialized software such as video editing programs, which I will have to wrap my head around, but you will also find a lot of great tutorials that deal with office applications such as Word, Excel, Powerpoint, or Outlook. And the great thing for us at GSU is that you can access the whole catalog for free.

Cheers,
Thomas