Screencasts, synonymous with video podcasts, provide a simple means to increase access to course content and learning resources. The product of screencasting is a video or movie file that can be uploaded to YouTube, a website, or a course management system for dissemination. Students may access screencasts repeatedly, at any time, from anywhere, using computers or a variety of handheld mobile devices (e.g., smart phones, iPods, iPads).
Possible Instructional Uses:
- Providing feedback on student work
- Responding to classroom assessments of student learning
- Modeling problem solving and other expert skills
- Creating opportunities for active learning
- Creating tutorials and other supports for students
Centrally Supported Tools:
Tips for creating screencasts
Keep screencasts as short as possible (5 – 10 minutes).
Less is more, given the limits on attention span. For longer topics, consider how they can be “chunked” into shorter targeted units.
Record screencasts in modular segments rather than a single “take”.
If one uses slideware (e.g., PowerPoint, KeyNote, Prezi, Google Presentations) to make a screencast, record each slide separately and link the clips together during the editing process.
Budget more time than you anticipate.
Screencasting can be an efficient process; but initially, aspects of recording, editing, and posting your screencasts online can take more time than expected. Experienced screencasters report a 2:1 ratio of recording and editing time:length of final product.
Pay attention to the audio quality.
An effective screencast can support learning without being Hollywood quality. However, as one assesses one’s screencasts, quality audio should be a key consideration for usability.
Closed captioning significantly increases the accessibility of screencasts for English as a second language (ESL) and/or students with disabilities.