Using lecture capture to transform lectures

September 16, 2010 at 9:17 am | Posted in lecture recording | Leave a comment
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Here at Southampton we are just gearing up for the start of our lecture capture pilot project, based around Panopto. This is a software solution, so if the 30-licence pilot is successful we will be able to simply upgrade to a site licence to make it available in *all* our teaching spaces and on *every* tutor’s office PC. I strongly feel that having a few ‘specially equipped rooms’ (especially if they are the big lecture theatres) will make pedagogic transformation unlikely.

I will be encouraging our pilot users to consider how they might use lecture capture to make their face-to-face teaching more student-centred. Ideally, if there are elements of the lecture that are ‘content transmission’ then pre-record these and require the students to view them before attending a lecture which has more opportunity for questions, problems, discussion and in-depth consideration of key points. We shouldn’t underestimate the amount of tutor effort needed to reconfigure their teaching in this way, and students also will need careful induction and support into this mode of study. They need to understand that ‘watching the video’ is necessary, but not sufficient.

In adopting this model, one of the challenges faced by tutors is that recording material in your office is a very different experience to delivering it live. There is no feedback from an audience to help you sound enthusiastic, and the normal hesitations and repetitions can make the office recording seem very amateurish. There are also accessibility requirements to wrestle with and it seems clear that a pre-recorded ‘lecture’ will require a transcript (or even subtitles!) to meet legal obligations. One option is to work from a script, but that means that the tutors will have to write those scripts… much more work than simply turning up to the lecture hall and speaking.

My guess is that most of the pilot users will simply record live sessions, but I hope that a few will explore the potential of the technology and enable us to develop a few local case studies to encourage others to move beyond basic use.

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