Week 5: Videos

By July 29, 2020April 5th, 2024Smeal Academy Newsletter

Smeal  Academy: Fall 2020 Readiness – Week 5

The goal of the Smeal Academy is to equip everyone with best practices and strategies for teaching, learning, and technology to ensure the Smeal community is prepared to respond to the unique challenges of Fall 2020. Between now and the end of July, we will be sending weekly emails with practical tips and information, providing live sessions, and holding virtual consultations.

This week, we share resources that can help you prepare for recording and sharing recordings for your fall course(s). We encourage you to plan to record your lectures ahead of time so that students can view the content asynchronously. That way, you can ensure that any time spent synchronously with your students can involve more engaging, active learning activities.

Instructors can use Zoom to record lectures ahead of time and post them in Canvas for students to watch. Consider creating shorter instructor videos of lecture content (ideally videos are no longer than 5-7 minutes). Research shows that students will watch a larger percentage of course videos that are shorter versus longer (Brame, 2016).

Zoom can auto-add the captions to the video if you’ve enabled it in your settings; adding captions will make your video more accessible for students. You can also provide your slides in a consistent, distributable format (e.g., pdf) that is accessible to students with visual impairments.

Works Cited

Brame C. J. (2016). Effective Educational Videos: Principles and Guidelines for Maximizing Student Learning from Video Content. CBE life sciences education, 15(4), es6. https://doi.org/10.1187/cbe.16-03-0125.


Current News

Use of Harvard Cases in Teaching
A question came up in our Smeal Community meeting and in some consultations regarding the use of Harvard Cases with remote instruction and video recording. If your students are paying for Harvard Course Packs AND your videos are only available to students who are logged into University-supported tools such as Canvas, Zoom, and Kaltura via WebAccess and not shared publicly to the general public, you can review Harvard cases in your courses and record, then share your lectures with students while remaining copyright compliant.

Helpful Websites

Upcoming Live Sessions

  • Strategies and Tools for Live and Pre-Recorded Course Videos: Are you pre-recording your lectures for Fall but not sure where to begin? Do you have questions about Zoom settings for teaching and learning? Are you curious about best practices for sharing your recordings? This session will focus on tips and strategies for recording, hosting, and sharing recordings from an instructor’s perspective.Join us Wednesday, July 15 from 1 to 2 p.m. via Zoom.
  • Using iPads as Whiteboards in Remote Learning: This session will explore strategies and best practices for using iPads as whiteboards when leading remote classes via Zoom. Join us Wednesday, July 22 from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. via Zoom.

NOTE:  Recordings and resources from previous sessions can be found on our eLDIG  Website.

Tips of the Week

Tip #1: Consider recording a “Welcome” or “Meet Your Instructor” video, as it provides students with a sense of who their instructor is, and helps to set the tone for the duration of the course, especially when you may not be meeting face-to-face.

Tip #2: Hold students accountable for watching lectures by creating Kaltura video quizzes or creating synchronous activities based on the content.


Ask eLDIG/RIIT – Open Consultations

Zoom Hours:

  • Thursday, July 16, 10 to 11 a.m.
  • Thursday, July 23, 1 to 3 p.m.
  • More to be announced


Check out the eLDIG website for more resources and support.

Contact Us

Email us at: course-support@smeal.psu.edu or fill out our Remote Teaching Support form.