Podcast: Video Use in Courses

Topics:
Published: Friday, July 8, 2022
Summary:

On today's University of Arizona Futures in Digital Learning podcast, we have a conversation about video use in course design.
 

Join Adam Davi and Brian Hale as they discuss best practices for using video in your course, share stories about their design experiences, and provide practical tips for introducing learner made videos.

Speaker 1 (00:04): On today's University of Arizona Futures in Digital Learning Podcast. We have a conversation about video use, in course, design.

Speaker 2 (00:12): I want them to use video as a way to engage and connect with their students from the get go.

Speaker 1 (00:19): Join Adam Davi and Brian Hale as they discuss best practices for using video in your course share stories about their design experiences and provide practical tips for introducing learner made videos. Welcome everybody to the Futures in Digital Learning Podcast. The month of April, uh, I'm Adam Davi, a Senior Instructional Designer here at the Office of Digital Learning. And I'm here with my co-host.

Speaker 2 (00:49): Brian Hale, an Instructional Designer also at the Office of Digital Learning.

Speaker 1 (00:52): Awesome. And today, uh, the two of us are going to dive into the very hot button issue of, uh, video use in, in online courses. So I'm just going to throw it right out there to you. Brian, how do you use video or how do you, uh, talk to instructors about using video in their online courses?

Speaker 2 (01:15): Uh, so the sad part of this podcast is we only have an hour for this topic, but, um, what I say to my instructors is, especially now it's 2022. We've, we've been dealing with a pandemic for two years and you know, what I say to them is I approach it from two different angles. One, I want them to use video as a way to engage and connect with their students from the get go. And by that, I mean, put a video in your announcements so that you don't just have this page of text waiting for your students when they get in there. And similar to that, I say, make your lectures a video. Don't just give your student a PowerPoint, give them a video so that they can hear your voice. They can see your face. So when I say right off the bat use video in your announcements.

Speaker 2 (02:14): One thing I tell my instructors is they don't have to be Hollywood production level 32nd announcements. Please film this thing on your laptop with you sitting on the couch with a cup of coffee, with a cat on your lap, Sunday afternoon, whatever it's 30 seconds of your time that shows your students, that you're an actual person looking at their content, going over it, preparing them for the week that's coming ahead. And it shows that you're a human being. Now, when I suggest to them use video for your lectures, then we wanna bump up the production quality a little bit more so that if your lecture is a 10 minute lecture or a half hour, or maybe even an hour, who knows the production quality is there, we've got their name appearing on the bottom with some colorful graphics. We've got music, maybe some underscoring, some fading in fading in our video team at the U of a does the most creative things.

Speaker 2 (03:10): And they do it, I mean, in a blink of an eye. So it's one thing that the instructors don't have to worry about because we offered that service to them. All you have to do is show up and smile in front of the camera, those kind of things that require a, a higher production quality to them. Um, that's when you need to be sitting in your, at your desk with a minimal background, no distractions have really good audio. I also tend to talk to them about the downsides of video that if you're gonna be showing something in a video, make sure it's something that needs a video for it. Right? For example, we're doing a podcast right now. We don't necessarily need the video of us talking through zoom to make this podcast engage. Right. Um, if we were showing a bunch of graphs or pictures relating to video use, I could understand let's throw a video tag in at the end.

Speaker 2 (04:08): And if you want to quote, listen for this podcast through YouTube or some sort of video platform, you could absolutely do that, but just doing a video, just to do a video, I think one, it can get old and it can Bo down your course with a whole bunch of videos that don't necessarily need to be there. Right? I'm definitely all for the videos because coming at it from a student's perspective, I wanna see my instructor. I don't just wanna constantly read notes from my instructor, you know? And so being able to, to see them, to hear their voice, to hear their inflection. And one thing that you can't do over text is see enthusiasm, you know, so that's kind of my viewpoint on, on how I like videos and how I approach it with my instructors. What do, how do you do it? What do you...

Speaker 1 (05:01): So I, I take kind of a similar approach. I, you know, I look at it as, you know, what, what video is necessary for the course, what can you do with video that you can't do, uh, with something else? And I sort of frame it as, uh, you know, to start like, let's, let's do a course introduction or, or some sort of, you know, intro video know to, to the course that is gonna get students acclimated, whether that's, um, you know, an interactive syllabus, whether it's just, you know, showing students what the outcomes are and the objectives through the course, whether it's, you know, taking them on a, you know, kind of narrated guide through the course, uh, whatever that may be. Um, and, and also to show a little bit of your personality at, as the instructor too, like you mentioned, uh, you know, show the students that you're a real person and that you're passionate about this course topic, right.

Speaker 1 (05:49): Uh, you're teaching it for a reason. And so, you know, let's start there and then let's look at the modules and, and look at, you know, how, how can you use video to introduce students to each of these modules or units that you are asking them to go through each week? Um, and so what's a good way to do that. Does it need to be a 30 minute video? Probably not, you know, can you do it in like a five minute video and just, you know, kind of introduce them to the topic and go from there and set the, the expectations for each week or each module, you know, I, I kind of help them think through some of those things and really what I, what I want to try to do more than anything is steer them away from the idea that they have to replicate in person lectures with video lectures, you know, in a, in an, in person, 16 week, course they, you know, might be giving three hour long lectures a week, uh, well, in an online seven and a half week course, you're not gonna want to replicate that with videos cuz students aren't gonna watch all of that.

Speaker 1 (06:49): Uh, and so how can you, how can you, you know, kind of skip to the good parts, so to speak, uh, with your video and what, what is visually stimulating, uh, in that medium that you, you know, maybe can't replicate with other, with a PowerPoint or with a text or with something along those lines, and then, you know, kind of, you know, talking about chunking it, like, you know, does it, does it need to be, let's say you, you have a topic you wanna talk about and it's, you're like, this is like a 30 minute lecture. It doesn't need to be one 30 minute video, or can we break it up into three, 10 minute videos maybe, uh, and give the students, you know, some, some control over their own pacing in the course, things like that. So it's, uh, you know, those are, are some of the discussions I have with instructors about using video, you know, from their stand point.

Speaker 1 (07:38): And like you mentioned also, you know, the production quality, uh, and we realized maybe not all of our listeners, uh, have access to a studio like we do here at U Arizona. But, you know, we have some tips and tricks for recording your own remote videos and, and having to, and get yourself set up and, you know, doing some high quality things with, uh, you know, even your phone, that's the case. If that's the only kind of camera you have, um, there's ways to, to kind of amplify the quality on your phone and, and record some high quality videos that...

Speaker 2 (08:08): Way. Well, I wanna take just a second. I wanna break down three things you said before we hit too far past them. Yeah. One, um, you had mentioned doing a course tour via video, and I just wanna remind folks who are listening, if you're on the quality matters track, wanting to get your course certified through quality matters, a course tour is one of the first things a QM reviewer looks for. And if you do it through the means of video, that is gonna save you time, instead of doing a bunch of screenshots and typing things out, because you may change up your course every, every semester, every time you offer it. And so just doing a quick one to three minute video of the start here, section here's where to find all of the stuff that helps your students engage. And you also mentioned doing, uh, module overviews in a video.

Speaker 2 (09:00): Yeah. That's another fantastic way because as the instructor, you get to showcase your passion, you get to lean into the camera and talk about scenarios. You've encountered why it's important that we're learning what we're learning this week. And then, um, as, as you were saying about taking an in-person lecture and breaking it up for an online class, being able to chunk that information out, obviously as the instructor, you're gonna think all of the information that I give students in my in-person class carries the same weight. So I need to give it to my online folks. Right. You know? Yes. Comma, however, maybe not in the same amount or in, even in the same order. Right? So working with your instructional designer, um, you know, going to them and saying, Hey, I, I do these four lectures. They're all about an hour long. Um, help me figure out how I can break them up so that my mind students are gonna get the same information from 'em that my in person, folks do.

Speaker 2 (10:07): And another thing that this is just kind of recently coming to my mind, thinking about is that videos are visual and how do our, our students who have visual impairments absorb the information that we're giving them in the videos. There have been some videos that I've seen in courses where they discuss charts and tables, and it's extremely difficult without a transcript. Now, luckily if you come to our studio at Digital Learning, we give you a transcript. If you record our video for us, so you don't have to sit and transcribe it. One thing I recommend to my instructors, if you're gonna do that weekly introductory video, type it out first, so that you can paste, you can copy and paste your text version into a text announcement. And those student that wanna watch the video, they can watch the video, the students that wanna read it can read it because sometimes our students may not be in a place where they can watch a video, but they might be able to read the text or the transcript of that video. So those are all like, there are so many spinning plates that you have to have while thinking of, can I use video or do I have to do it in text? Right. You know, so it's, these are all just great, great ideas.

Speaker 1 (11:24): Yeah. I, I mean, you, you bring up, um, you know, some interesting points on the accessibility side of video, which I think is always going to be a, um, a speed bump, uh, so to speak in, in terms of using video, because, you know, obviously we, when, when we have instructors go through our studio, we can proactively caption, uh, the videos that come through our studio. But if they're just recording on their own at home, they don't necessarily have access to, to those types of features and those types of, of resources. Um, and, you know, if a student requests captioning through our disability resources, uh, center, uh, they can get those videos caption, uh, you know, for the student. It doesn't always, uh, it, it's not always easy, um, right. To, to get those things. And, and like, you see that kind of thinking about having that own proactive, uh, kind of thought, uh, before you use video of, of how, how can this be kind of universally designed, you know, going back to our last podcast, um, in terms of what is, you know, how are all students gonna be able to access this?

Speaker 1 (12:30): Yeah. Um, and so that's why I think it's important to not just saturate your course with videos, but to have kind of that mix. Um, and that's, you know, that's one of the other things I, I kind of talk about is, is to have, you know, a variety of, of different mediums that you're using to connect students. So maybe you, you do have some video, maybe you have some, some audio, some podcasts, uh, you know, know or something where students can just listen, uh, to something maybe it's an interview that you wanna have with another faculty member on campus. Does that need to be in video or can that be in podcast form? Can that be just over audio? Uh, and that can be just as engaging, uh, as a video, you know, and, and then maybe there are just some, some text based resources that students are aren't interacting with and engaging with. Yeah. So it's, you know, those are all things to kind of think about and, and to, to provide for students to not just, uh, not just for accessibility for, but for engagement purposes as well.

Speaker 2 (13:28): Exactly. So, um, one of the things that over in public health, I encourage some of the instructors over there to use voice thread. So the instructor puts together their PowerPoint. They upload it to voice thread. They go in and narrate it either audio narration or, uh, video, but I'm also encouraging them to shift some of their discussions from the D two L discussion boards to voice thread. For the simple reason that these students are at home, working through these classes all by themselves, they don't get the benefit of being in a classroom with however many other students. So they also don't get the benefit of seeing how another student would deliver a difficult message to a pay or how to improve their own bedside manner. So by allowing the students to upload their own voice threads, what I'm hoping is they'll be able to see other students and learn bedside manner from good examples and not so good examples.

Speaker 2 (14:35): Yeah. And, and, and one of the things I hear from instructors is, well, how do I grade that? I don't have time to sit and watch everybody's voice threads for this particular topic. That's an excellent point. How do you grade a bunch of voice threads for your class? You may not have to, why not let your students evaluate each other on this, make it a low stakes thing? Yes. So that you can see, did everybody upload a voice thread? Yes. Check. They get a point. Is everybody responding to at least one other person? Yes. Check. They get a point and let your, your students sort of, of evaluate each other on their presentation skills, their attire, their, um, how they have their zoom room set up, for example, um, and kind of offload that sort of grading onto your students. And then you can focus more on, uh, you know, what their essays look like and what their actual responses look like. Um, so it's just another way to engage the students, not so much with the instructor, but with all other, other students. Exactly.

Speaker 1 (15:38): Yep. You know, it's, it's interesting. You bring up VoiceThread because the, the first time I used VoiceThread and of, and of course that I was teaching, um, I was real excited to use it cuz I had used it, use it as a student before and loved it and I'm like, oh, I'm gonna put this in, in course that I'm teaching it's, it's gonna be great. Uh, students are gonna, you know, interact and, you know, with, with audio comments or video comments, uh, you know, and it'll be so engaging and it'll be great. And the, the first, uh, instance of it in the course, uh, 95% of students responded with just the text message response. Okay. And I said, oh, they're not using the, the video or the audio. Like why, why are they not doing this? Like, oh, well I can take away the text message, force them to use video audio.

Speaker 1 (16:22): Right. Yeah. Um, and you know, that's something that, that is an option on voice thread. You can, you can do that. But now as we've kind of gone through this pandemic the couple years, you know, I've realized that that maybe, you know, the reason they're not, when students aren't responding with voice or with video on a tool like that is maybe they, they don't have access to, to something like that. You know, we take for granted that every student has, has access to, you know, maybe a, a laptop with a camera or, uh, you a microphone or maybe has a place where they can go. Maybe they do all of their school work in a coffee shop. Right. Which isn't conducive to, uh, you know, recording, uh, any sort of audio. Yeah. Um, because it it's too loud. Um, you know, so I do think that voice right is a, is a great tool to have, to let them use.

Speaker 1 (17:12): And the nice thing that is, it's not just the audio or video that the students record, but they can upload a visual. Yeah. Um, yeah. Uh, with that. And so I think it's important in terms of, you know, the, the universal design and accessibility that we talked about too, and also thinking about students as people, um, to recognize, you know, maybe not all students will like that, um, or be able to do those type of, um, those type of assignments in the way that you envision it as an instructor. Um, and, and that's okay. Um, you know, I think it, it's important that you understand that, but also that you set those expectations and, and kind of set the stage for students about what, how, how they can interact with the tool and how they can interact with each other. You know, I think it's important to, to kind of bring that, that side of it up, cuz I do think voicer is a great tool and you know, the stuff you mentioned about grading is valid and important. Yeah. Uh, you know, one, one question I would mention to that too, is, well, how do you grade all of their written responses in a discussion board? Right. Um, you know, it's almost just as time consuming, if not more yeah. To do that. So, you know, I'll, I'll just say rubric, rubrics...

Speaker 2 (18:30): Rubrics, there you go. Yep.

Speaker 1 (18:30): Maybe that's a future topic for us to get into. Also...

Speaker 2 (18:34): I love our, the functionality we have with our rubrics and we oh yeah. We don't use enough of it. No, it is such a time saver for instructor when, when you have your rubrics set up properly. Yeah. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (18:47): But you know, I, so I kind of thinking about out this too, with this idea of, of voice thread and discussions and things like that, you know, something that I've been talking to instructors a little bit more about too with video is if you're noticing something on these discussion boards or in your voice thread, some kind of like universal feedback per se, that you're, you're picking up on students, like instead of, you know, going through and I always encourage professors to go through and give as much individual feedback as possible and, and make their presence known on, on things like discussion boards and voice threads. But sometimes you want to just address everybody with, with something universal. And that's a great way to kind of insert some video as well is just to record a, a one to two minute little feedback video that you can post either on the announcements you can post on the board or voice thread itself, um, that just sort of addresses some of the, the universal, um, concepts or, or things that you're noticing throughout the, that particular assignment. Um, and one, it shows students that you're engaged and you're active. Yep. Um, and, and too, it's, uh, you know, it's kind of a, a quicker way to get some things across that maybe you're, you're seeing and you're noticing and, and that you maybe need to, you want to correct. Or, uh, or steer students in a, uh, a different direction moving forward.

Speaker 2 (20:06): Right. Yeah. What do you think when putting on the instructor hat? Yeah. What, what do you think when you're deciding whether or not to use a video for something like you can put together a PowerPoint, upload it to voice thread, you can do a full video through Penopto if you wanted to, um, are there key words or key topics or key ideas that you think lend themselves more to video rather than reading a passage from a book or a text based assignment, or does it kind of vary depending on the, the topic you're teaching?

Speaker 1 (20:44): You know, I think it, it kind of varies, uh, a little bit in, in the topic. Um, I have worked with, uh, quite a few, uh, film courses. Um, and so obviously in a film course, you're gonna naturally kind of go towards the use of video. Um, and it's hard to, to use video, uh, in a course like that because you, you wanna show clips. You wanna, the whole purpose of the course is about film and, you know, video itself. So those type of courses, you know, obviously you're, you're leaning more towards something that is in video, but in other courses, I, I think it just, it kind of depends. It's hard to kinda, I, I, I don't have a good answer for that. Now, Brian, you put me on the spot here.

Speaker 2 (21:31): Well, no, I, I, I think, I think you already answered the question earlier and it's now processing in my brain. The stuff that lends itself easily to video are, is like the course intro the module overview. Yeah. Um, a little announcements you can do video for that, no matter what course you're teaching, that's true. True. When you get into history, art, film, political science, geography, things like that. You may need to take a further step back and go, what is the point of this video? What, what do I want them to take away from this? Um, you know, am I showing geographic expansion? Am I showing how to use a piece of filming equipment as, as a big techy nerd guy over here? Um, I'm learning a new soundboard for a theater company. And the manual for that is about if anyone remembers what yellow pages used to look like and how thick they were.

Speaker 2 (22:30): Um, it's about half that thickness. So it's maybe about half an inch thick. And I'm, I'm just beside myself thinking why hasn't this company that makes a ton of money selling these soundboards? Why haven't they come up with any instructional videos on how to use this thing? That way I know, am I pushing the right buttons? Twidling right. Knobs, is this the right input for the whatever thing, you know, rather than just having me flip through the most boring technical manual ever, it's a sleeping pill, they're making sound equipment. So they must have smart phones, right? Like they could, and there are vloggers out there 100% record their content off of their phones. And they have hundreds of thousands of viewers. Yeah. So, you know, I always say, don't let the lack of webcam on your laptop, get in your way of, of using your phone. Sometimes the phone is even better quality yeah. Than what you're gonna get out of your laptop. So, well...

Speaker 1 (23:29): I, you, you know, I, that brings up kind of another question too, is what do you think about sending students to a place like YouTube for videos? You know, we, we're talking about videos. We don't necessarily have to talk about instructor created videos. Sure. There's thousands of videos out there in the world.

Speaker 2 (23:50): Well, I, I have few different mindsets on that. Number one, because it's YouTube. Sometimes they're gonna get a commercial within you. And then the other thing I think about is there is one course that I have been working on and all of the videos are YouTube videos not created by the instructor. And from a student standpoint, my thought is, why am I paying to attend this university? When this instructor hasn't created their own content at all, they've just curated videos on YouTube. I could do that. If I wanted to learn about this topic, I could go to YouTube and type in whatever keywords I want and learn from these same videos that this instructor curated for me. Why am I quote, wasting my money on this drop? Let me go find an instructor that's actually engaged with their content. Yeah. Now let's go to the flip side of that coin.

Speaker 2 (24:47): You have an instructor who doesn't have access to the great studio that we have. Doesn't have access to build great videos. They go to YouTube, they find an awesome video that hits every one of the, the boxes, you know, um, in that case. Absolutely. Let's, let's see if we can use that video. Yeah. Are we abusing any sort of copyright issues? I don't know. I'm not a copyright lawyer. I'm not gonna touch that question with a principal. Um, but I think all the content on YouTube falls under some sort of copyright use at some point. So yeah. Um, you may have to look in the description to find out, can it be reproduced somewhere, just, just putting a link in your course to the YouTube content, I think is kind of enough to skate by perhaps, but you'd probably want to check with your own university's clearance department or whoever there is a wealth of information and miss information. Right. So...

Speaker 1 (25:49): I, well, and that's, you know, I, I, I bring up YouTube because that's the, everybody knows YouTube, right. Or we assume everybody knows of YouTube or has been there, or is familiar with it. And that's, uh, you know, where there, there is a lot of, a lot of video content. Um, it's not the only place to get video, obviously, um, on the internet and, um, you know, and you bring up copyright, uh, as well, you know, the libraries I'm sure at every major institution has access to some sort of video, uh, service. Uh, we do here at, uh, at Arizona where you can get in touch with a librarian and you can find a video on, on the services that they offer canopy, uh, you know, whatever else it is, I'm blanking off the top of my head, but, but you can get that and you can get that, that link, uh, inserted into your course or that video even embedded into your course through, uh, the LMS.

Speaker 1 (26:46): Uh, and it's the, the copyright stuff has been taken care of cuz you're going through the library. Students have to access that, you know, with a login, uh, all that good stuff. And there's a lot of great information in there and, and a lot of great material. And I, I worked with a, a history professor who used, you know, clips from various documentaries through the library's, uh, streaming services to put in his course and they're great videos. And he has his own, like you mentioned, it's, it's not like he just went and kind of cherry picked a bunch of videos without doing his own. He's got his own in there too. So it's a mix of, uh, of him and then you other videos that maybe you can't, you know, produce as well on your own, uh, this was a history of Africa course. And so, you know, it's, there's videos of, uh, of all kinds of footage and imagery from Africa, things like that, that, you know, without going, what...

Speaker 2 (27:39): What are we gonna sell? Film crew...

Speaker 1 (27:42): Go, go there, get all this. Yeah...

Speaker 2 (27:45): Yeah, no we can't.

Speaker 1 (27:46): So yeah, so it's, it's a great resource and, and I think it's, um, you know, that's another thing to kind of think about when you're talking about video in your course, right? Like, like you said, it's, you don't have to make all of the video that you're putting in your, um, one that's time consuming, two it's, uh, you know, maybe not feasible and three it's okay to use other resources out there. And maybe that's something that, you know, my next question is kind of thinking about what about students with video? Like how are they creating or using video in, in your course? And is that something that's an option for instructors and like, I'll ask you to put on the instructor hat, like, what do you think about students either creating or using videos, um, in to create content of their own in the course?

Speaker 2 (28:37): So I think it is beautiful and a brilliant solution to the, by PowerPoint, right?

Speaker 2 (28:45): In this day and age, everybody knows how to use PowerPoint. Yeah. So, and it's been done so much that I, I think everybody, when they see a PowerPoint, they just start zoning out because it's got those bullet points. But with the video, you've got somebody leaning in and engaging and you can hear the excitement in their voice about the topic. Or you can hear that they don't really wanna be talking about this topic and maybe this isn't the area they're gonna specialize in. They're just doing it to get the grade and then move on to the next course, which is what they want to talk about. Right. But by allowing them to make this video content, you're allowing them to, um, share and also increase their creativity. So even though they may not wanna be doing this, they're gonna learn skills that they're gonna use later on.

Speaker 2 (29:34): Because if you go and look at just how YouTube has just ballooned since the start, I mean, everybody's a vlogger on YouTube now, even if it's just simple little clip, everybody's on TikTok. Now here's these, these 22nd clips. And, um, it's amazing how those clips just, you put one little clip out there and it blossoms overnight into hundreds of thousands of views. Um, and, and it's not, I mean, it's a dog jumping into a swimming pool. It's yeah. You know, I think the more ways we can allow our students to be creative. So let's say you have an assignment that, um, I want you to be able to deliver a difficult message to your patient. There's multiple ways you can do that. You can have them write an essay with bullet points. You know, here's how we're gonna start approaching this, but here's the intro here.

Speaker 2 (30:29): We're backing it up. Here's our plan for how to get through this together. Uh, me as the physician, you as the patient, et cetera, et cetera, but we can give them access to podcasting tools through voice thread or whatever, access to the video documentation through voice thread. We have, we're lucky enough at U Arizona. We have the Adobe creative cloud. So students can go download, uh, Adobe premier and make a video. They can download Adobe audition and do a podcast with it if they wanted to. But I think days, if you, as the instructor can put your hat on and go, this is what I want my students to do. This is my assignment. Are there a couple of different ways that I can get the same results if I have them do a video or a podcast or a written essay, or maybe I've got that one student who doesn't have the time. Yeah. Technical know how maybe I just give them a quiz or a test or something, you know? Uh what's, what's the equality going on?

Speaker 1 (31:29): You know? Yeah, no, I, I think it's important, uh, to give students choice. Um, and you know, sometimes that's, uh, instructors balk at that idea, cause they're like, oh, well now I'm, you know, grading, you know, three different types of assignments that are all trying to do the same thing instead of just having one essay or one, uh, presentation, things like that.

Speaker 2 (31:52): But as you said earlier, if you have your rubric, there...

Speaker 1 (31:54): You go. You know.

Speaker 2 (31:56): What you're looking.

Speaker 1 (31:57): For? Well, it comes back to rubrics.

Speaker 2 (31:58): That's right. Yeah. It doesn't matter which, which way they pick, as long as they're meeting...

Speaker 1 (32:03): They're meeting the requirements on the rubric or the, the standard set on, on the rubric. Exactly. So, you know, if you set it up where you can just use a rubric to grade, you know, assignments in, in different modalities, then you can provide that choice and, and give students kind of more of that ownership, uh, over their work. Um, you know, I also wanna mention you, you brought TikTok and I, I have a colleague who works in Florida and he, uh, has been real active the last few years about using TikTok in his courses and using Instagram reels in his courses and how that can be, you know, a powerful engagement tool for students. Um, and so, you know, maybe one of our future, uh, podcasts, I can reach out to him. He can come on and talk to us a little bit more, but, uh, you know, about that topic, but I think it's, it's interesting because that's, that's where students are. Right. We, we wanna meet students where they are. Yep. Um, and they're, those are the two that they're using. So how can we leverage that? Yeah. For our own courses and, and to provide that, that different type of engagement. So I, I think that's a, a fun, um, kind of look into what's possible.

Speaker 2 (33:13): Yeah. You know, for, it would be, it would be awesome if we could invite Dr. Stray yeah. To come talk with, because she had, um, Chris, she had a discord room for her class to go and talk. Um, and, and that's where students are nowadays. They're in TikTok and discord and WhatsApp and all these other places. Yeah. Now the drawback to that, and I think one of the drawbacks to video is when you ask a student to record themself or to access your class through TikTok, Instagram, whatever, when they record video, they're inviting all of these other students into their safe space. And, um, so you're in TikTok, you ask the student to follow you. Uh, you can, as the instructor, get to see who, who is following you, you can also go look at what other topics and other creators your students are following.

Speaker 2 (34:12): So it really they're, you know, they're letting you into their kind of private and personal world. So we yeah. Need to also be respectful of that. And you, what comes to mind is there was, uh, and it made the news. There was this actor who sent in, who was doing a live audition and one of the casting directors didn't mute their microphone. And we were talking nonsense about the room that this actor was in, in, and the actor overheard them and said, Hey guys, that's why I'm auditioning, gimme the job. And I can get a better background for you, you know? So we just have to make sure that when we are viewing a student submitted video, that those kind of things, that's not what we're judging, we're looking at the kind of stuff. And, and, you know, um...

Speaker 1 (35:02): Yeah...

Speaker 2 (35:03): I, I think generally all instructors do, but it's, it's just one of those things that you kind of have to keep in the back of your mind, like, you know, let's not make assumptions and...

Speaker 1 (35:11): Right. And, and I, I think that, that goes back to, you know, something I mentioned earlier is, is setting those expectations ahead of time. Yeah. Uh, for what, you know, what, what you expect of the students and, and what you, you know, kind of expect of the, the work that they are submitting or, and how they're submitting it. And, um, and also, you know, providing kind of some of those avenues to, for students to reach out, uh, if they don't feel comfortable and you know, that they, um, that, that they can, you know, contact you as the instructor and, and have that conversation about, um, exactly, you know, maybe an alternative or something like that. Um, you know, there's lots of different, different ways that, that I've kind of been exposed to over the last year of, of how to, you know, teach with the, with more empathy in mind, uh, in those senses and, you know, using things like a liquid syllabus and, um, you know, uh, incorporating some, you know, kind of more of that humanity into, uh, your course, uh, things like that, um, to provide some of those avenues for students and to, to really recognize that students are individuals and their, their people.

Speaker 1 (36:26): Um, yeah. And so, and I think we, we talked about the liquid syllabus actually, I think in, in our last podcast too, with, um, when we had, uh, Jessica Zeitler on with us talking about universal design. Um, and, and so that's, um, you know, I, it's a cool idea and I think it's something that's kind of spreading a little bit throughout higher education, um, which is, you know, for those who don't know, a liquid syllabus is, is less about the, the kind of nuts and bolts of the course and more about the humanity of students. Um...

Speaker 2 (36:57): Yeah. What is your student need to...

Speaker 1 (36:59): Learn? Exactly. Yeah. You know, what, what are, how are you meeting student needs, uh, you know, kind of outside of the curriculum, so to speak. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (37:08): Um...

Speaker 1 (37:08): So...

Speaker 2 (37:09): I think when we talk about setting expectations for the videos, one thing I've seen that I really, really like seeing is when I go into a course and there are external videos not produced by the instructor, but the instructor leaves a little tag on the video, watch this video from X minute to X minute, because it's important to know this topic, you know, that they set the expectation. You don't have to watch the entire video, but here's why I've included this video. It's not just some random video to meet time requirement. Right. It's because this relates back to learning objective one or yeah. Objective, whatever. Um, so I think that's also really, really important.

Speaker 1 (37:50): Yeah. Yeah. That's um, no, that's great. And that, you know, for those of you, as mentioned before, if you're on the QM track, that's important too, this know that alignment, so definitely.

Speaker 2 (38:03): And one thing, um, so, uh, I did an art class last spring. I can't remember. It was a couple dev cycles ago. I was working with the art instructor and, um, I had mentioned to her come into the studio, we can record all the videos in the studio. And she said, um, well, I have all of this stuff in the art studio. And I said, oh, well, in that case, let's pack up our cameras. We're gonna do a field trip to the art studio. Don't forget that your video lectures don't just have to be a PowerPoint or a talking head video. If you're gonna take your smartphone out with you, go somewhere and do kind of a field trip video yeah. Is relevant to what you're talking about. You know, if you wanna do a talking head video, maybe you can go down for your government class and just record sitting on the steps of the capital building here's, you know, and show your students, this is what it looks like from the city that I teach in. Yeah. You know, there are so many ways to make videos engaging and, and worthy for your course.

Speaker 1 (39:09): Yeah. That's a, those, that's a great example. Um, you know, I think it's, uh, when we talk to our studio team, I think they're always, you know, kind of bringing up the idea of field shoots, uh, with instructors and, um, you know, I, I don't think many of them take, take a month on that, but, uh, when they do it, you often get some really cool engaging videos for students. Yeah. Yeah. So that's, you know, those are, are Def funny things to, to think about as well. Yeah. This was, uh, this was a great conversation. I think, I think we could go on for a couple more hours. I...

Speaker 2 (39:43): Think so.

Speaker 1 (39:43): Yeah. Um, but you know, for the sake of, of our listeners, um, I think we'll, we'll cut it short here and, and maybe we'll revisit this topic and, and kind of maybe we'll explore some, some of the other ideas that we brought and this podcast and, you know, some future podcasts. So definitely if there, if there are things you want us to talk about, uh, in any future episodes, uh, shoot us an email, uh, you can find us, um, you know, online through, through the University of Arizona, through digital learning, uh, dot arizona.edu. I find our emails there, you know, we're happy to take suggestions and...

Speaker 2 (40:20): Absolutely.

Speaker 1 (40:22): But yeah, this was fun.

Speaker 2 (40:24): Absolutely. It's always...

Speaker 1 (40:25): Fun. It is always

Speaker 2 (40:26): Fun. Always fun. Yeah. Here is not one of these that I haven't walked away from yet where I go, you know, that was just, I didn't really learn anything or right. That stuff, you know? Yeah. The people we have on our podcast and the discussions that we start getting into, and even when we get sidetracked. Yeah. Um, you know, there's always something that I, I get to take away from this podcast and apply usually later in the day or early, or I reach out to one of my instructors and I say, Hey, we were just talking about this in. And it made me think of you, um, gimme a call when you have five minutes, because I have an idea, you know, and that's, that's another great benefit to working with your instructional designers, the back and forth we have, we just come up with ideas left and right.

Speaker 1 (41:11): Yeah. That, that's true. Uh, and it's fun for us because it's structural designers. Um, and it's, it's also fun for us when we see the, the passion and excitement that instructors have for their content. Yeah. Um, so, you know, that's, we enjoy that and I, I, I'm assuming they enjoy it too, cuz I can see that enjoyment on their face. Yeah. So yeah. Well, great. Well thank you for this, uh, this wonderful conversation, Brian, and, and we'll be back next month to, um, talk about uh, another engaging topic. All right. Yeah. So next month we're gonna be back, uh, to talk about the riveting subject of data informed teaching practices. So I know that...

Speaker 2 (41:53): Sounds boring, but not when we're gonna talk about...

Speaker 1 (41:55): It. Yeah. I know it might not jump off the, you know, jump outta your speaker when we say it, but trust me, it'll be...

Speaker 2 (42:04): Exciting, exciting.

Speaker 1 (42:05): We, we will amp it up for you all for all of our listeners. So yeah. So please join us for that and uh, you know, keep tuning in every month, uh, for our podcasts. And uh, thank you all for listening.

Speaker 3 (42:21): The Futures in Digital Learning Podcast is a production of the University of Arizona, Digital Learning. If you have any questions, comments, or ideas you'd like to share with our office, go to the contact, us link on our website.

Authored By:

Adam Davi

Adam Davi
Senior Instructional Designer

Brian Hale

Brian Hale
Instructional Designer