Videos are often used in a web 1.0 manner for information transmission, frequently as part of a flipped approach, where students are in a relatively passive role while watching. However, it is becoming increasingly common for videos to be used in a web 2.0 manner where students are tasked with creating and sharing their own, perhaps as part of digital storytelling activities. The term vodcast is sometimes used to refer to syndicated video files – much as podcasts are syndicated audio files – but the term video is heard much more often, whether referring to single, stand-alone videos, or to videos which form part of a series.
While podcasting was originally seen as associated with mobile learning, much research has revealed that students prefer to listen to educational podcasts while stationary, often making use of desktop or laptop computers. Conversely, videos were originally seen as associated with viewing on desktop or laptop computers, but current usage trends have shifted towards the viewing of videos, especially short-form videos, on smartphones and other mobile devices, often while users are taking public transport. Common videosharing platforms, as detailed on the social sharing page, usually exist in app format for mobile devices. Of course, mobile devices can also be used to shoot, and even edit, videos before they are shared.
If teachers do not wish to create their own videos for students, they may instead recommend educational videos from general platforms like YouTube and Vimeo, or from educationally oriented platforms like the Khan Academy, SchoolTube, TeacherTube, TED and WatchKnowLearn. Customised lessons built around videos can be accessed, and even created, by educators using TED-Ed, launched in 2012. Services for adding interactive elements to educational videos include PlayPosit, Edpuzzle and SocialBook (note that the last of these is for texts, audio and/or video files). Animated whiteboard videos can be created with VideoScribe, with similar functionality available from Explain Everything and ShowMe.
When students create their own videos, there are typically several steps involved:
- recording a video using a video camera, regular digital camera, or mobile phone
- editing the video on a computer using common software such as iMovie (on a Mac) or Windows Movie Maker (on a PC), one of the many online video editing services, or one of the many video editing apps for mobile devices (students may find the ACMI Film It site a useful guide to video production and editing)
- uploading the video to a service such as those listed in the videosharing section of the social sharing page on this website
Variations which are useful to avoid students showing their faces and revealing their identities in videos include Voki or Blabberize, where animated characters or photos ‘speak’ audio files on your behalf. For educational tips, see The Official Voki Blog. A popular app with similar functionality is Tellagami. Animated videos can be created with Dfilm (formerly Dvolver) or Powtoon. Machinima movies, which can be easily produced by teachers or students in virtual worlds or gaming environments, also hold considerable potential. To create green screen videos, try the Do Ink app. For more options, see the digital storytelling page of this website.
Another variation on the use of videos is video-to-video conversations – that is, where students respond to the teacher or each other in short-form videos – which can be facilitated on a platform such as Flipgrid. There are also a number of synchronous video platforms such as Blackboard Collaborate, Microsoft Teams and Zoom, all of which came to prominence when educational institutions shifted their teaching online at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, and which offer a range of interaction and sharing functionality beyond video chat itself, including allowing interactions to be recorded, archived and shared.
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