Posts Tagged ‘lecture’

The pedagogical model termed “flipped classrooms” refers to a scenario where homework and lectures are reversed. Typically, students come to class to hear lectures and then go home and complete the application of that lecture (e.g., homework).  In flipped classrooms, students watch a short video before coming to class, and when students come to class, they apply the lessons taught in the short video. This approach allows instructors to use time in class to build skills and for collaboration.

Educators are adopting this model anytime students watch or listen to lectures before coming to class and then do workshops in class. In one approach, teachers may actually set up a series of videos with intermittent quizzes to test knowledge acquisition. A series of videos may help to ensure that students have a certain level of knowledge before coming to class. While potentially helpful in all classes, this approach seems to have a great deal of potential for career and technical classes (CTE).

Career and technical instructors have struggled with e-learning because CTE classes demand that students spend time in workshops and laboratories to ensure they are applying theoretical knowledge. A hybrid approach seems to work well in CTE classes. Further, the flipped classroom is a technique that may help students be efficient and teachers be more effective.

In the traditional classroom, students often focus on transcribing lectures rather than understanding what is being said. A pre-class video format allows students to view the lecture material as many times as they need in order understand the material. Students that need extra time to understand material (i.e., accessibility issues) may find this approach very helpful. In addition, teachers may be able to detect errors more efficiently in this model because more class time is spent on the application of material. Collaboration and informal learning may also be facilitated in flipped classrooms.

The flipped model does require more preparatory work for both the teacher and student. Teachers must be very organized and sequential in this approach. Students must spend time viewing and reflecting on the videos before class. However, students may get frustrated if their technology equipment is slow or incapable of loading the videos (e.g., dial-up internet).

Moving the videos used in flipped classrooms to mobile devices makes this model even more attractive. Students could access lectures anytime, anywhere and just in time for training. Business and industry may actually begin to think about adopting this model for training incumbent workers. Ultimately, this model places more responsibility on students to learn material before class and affords them the opportunity to reflect on and apply this information on their own. Flipped classrooms allow students to master material rather than just being exposed to knowledge.

EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative. (2010a, January). 7 things you should know about flipped classrooms. Retrieved from http://www.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/ELI7081.pdf

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In the short span of around 100 years, motion picture technology has moved from it’s infancy with silent films all the way to streaming high definition videos on mobile devices. The evolution of motion pictures has seen a dramatic turn in the last decade with the advent of Web-based video. The following discussion will focus on understanding the historical development of motion pictures in education, the current setting of videos and learning, and future possibilities within education.

Historical Development of Motion Pictures in Education

Around 1910, the Rochester, New York school system became the first educational organization to use educational video. A few years later, in the late 1920s, sound was introduced in motion pictures, which greatly expanded the technological capabilities of video. The addition of sound with video sparked a great deal of interests as researchers sought to study these dual processes of learning (e.g. dual coding theory).

This evolution continued over the next several decades. Schools primarily employed the film reel and projector technology from the beginning (i.e., 1910) until the 1950s. This technology was soon replaced by videotapes in the 1960s. The next step of development came in the 1980s and 1990s with the advent of several videodisc formats.

While this progress greatly improved motion pictures, the exponential growth in the late 20th century and early 21st century has become an issue. Educational organization have a limited amount of funds. Therefore, staying relevant and up-to-date has become increasingly hard as improvements come at a more rapid pace. For this reason, schools are now forced to move beyond mere considerations of technological superiority to also consider the shelf life of a new video format.

Current Setting of Videos and Learning

Web 2.0 videos are the most recent and fastest growing advent in the evolution of video. The author of the article, Chareen Snelson, discussed several facets of this new technology by focusing on one of the most popular providers of Web-based videos, YouTube. YouTube allows users to view videos through Web browsers such as Firefox or Internet Explorer. Users may upload videos in a variety of formats, but once on YouTube’s site, the videos are converted to Flash video. The advantage of Flash is that it is ubiquitous, free and cross platform (e.g., Windows and MacIntosh).

Creating and editing videos has become easy, affordable and accessible. Most camcorders and a growing number of mobile devices (e.g., smartphones) can be synced with a computer, and users can edit videos on their computer and upload the videos to the Web. Several of the recently developed smartphones can actually edit and upload the video within the phone itself (e.g., iPhone 4). Another option to capture video is a Webcam, which is connected directly to a computer. In addition, Adobe Premiere Express (http://www.adobe.com/products/premiereexpress) is a Web 2.0 technology that represents a new Web-based option in video editing.

Once individuals become a member of YouTube, they can create a customized Web page with a playlist, which is called a YouTube channel. The channel and playlist offers users the ability to share a collection of videos with others. Users can share videos by employing the HTML embed code, distributing the hyperlink or using one of the share options found on YouTube. Members are also able to track statistics on various aspects of uploaded videos (e.g., number of views).

After a video is uploaded and converted to Flash, three functions are automatically generated for that video: 1) Web page, 2) HTML embed code, and 3) a player. Basic changes can be made to videos after they are uploaded. For example, the video tags, description and title can be altered with the Info & Settings tool, and background audio files can be added with the Audio Swap tool.

Some Web-based video sites do allow users to download videos. However, YouTube does not allow videos to be downloaded, and this policiy is outlined in their terms of use. However, a number of third party applications give users the ability to capture and download online videos, including YouTube (e.g., Zamzar). If legality is in question, then users can look to The Center for Social Media (http://www.centerforsocialmedia.org) for clarification.

In the classroom, videos can be used to show historical events, depict the real world, visualize concepts, motivate learners or take virtual field trips. A limited amount of research has been conducted on using YouTube in the classroom, but studies about multimedia learning can be considered. Video is a powerful learning tool because it can portray processes, events and ideas.

Learners control the video (e.g., pace or position) on YouTube in an interactive manner. Additional videos are also available to YouTube users through branched and basic interactivity. Branched interactivity links similar videos so that users have the ability to skip from one video to the next and expand learning. Basic interactivity places a series of videos in specific sequence to help learners progress through material. Another facet of interactivity is the ability of respondents to give comments through posts or videoposts.

Precautions and Barriers

As teachers begin to embrace Web-based videos, a number of concerns should be considered. YouTube contains some videos that are inappopriate for educational use, but these videos are usually quickly identified and removed from their site. Another concern is the quality of videos on YouTube. There are a number of instructional videos that contain wonderful substance, but teachers should filter out bad videos and point students to the best media. In some cases, the quality of the videos is so poor that it might interfere with or prevent learning from taking place. Fortunately, some websites can actually help to “fix” poor quality videos, such as FixMyMovie (http://www.fixmymovie.com).

Suggestions for Teachers

Technical support, teacher training and adequate equipment are a vital compenent to using online videos. Technical support should be readily available to help troubleshoot any issues that arise. Professional development is necessary to prepare teachers to create, upload and use videos in the context of a class. Both of these efforts are undermined if adequate equipment is not in place. Ecucational organizations must develop a strong insfrastructure to handle the demands of uploading, streaming and downloading videos. Similarly, students and teachers must have computers and equipment that facilitate the use of videos.

Teachers can take preventative measures to ensure high quality videos. Educators should limit text and use large fonts to help viewers clearly see content. When performing a screen capture, zooming in on text can often help learners see the content more clearly. Finally, creators of video should employ captions and annotations to help meet the needs of all learners.

Future Possibilities Within Education

A huge repository of videos already exists on the Web. Fair use laws need to be clarified in coming years so that the public understands what is acceptable. This situation is compounded by the fact that technology is changing so quickly.

In the near future, users may be able to complete all video related needs through the Web. This technology already exists, but editing is still primarily done on laptops and desktops. As bandwidth continues to expand and new Web 2.0 technologies are created, the Internet will probably become a free, easy and preferred method to edit videos. In fact, a growing number of these videos will probably be filmed, edited and uploaded on a mobile device.

If educational funding continues to be slashed, then institutions will have to turn to online learning to help fill the gap. Whether or not this happens, videos will probably assume a more influential role in e-learning over the next few years. As teachers learn video technology, they will begin posting more videos. As technology continues to develop, viewing videos will become even more accessible and portable. Video is meaningful part of society and might assume a similar position in education.

Snelson, C. (2010). Web-based video for e-Learning: Tapping into the YouTube ™ Phenomenon. In Yang, H. H., & Yuen, S. C. (Eds.), Collective intelligence and e-Learning 2.0: Implications of Web-based communities and networking (pp. 147-166). Hershey, Pennsylvania: Information Science Reference.

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