*Guest Blog Post by Ethan Miller
Videos are not just a source of entertainment anymore. In the past decade or so, video based learning has become one of the most preferred methods of online learning. Ever since the advent of social media, videos are accessible to anyone and everyone irrespective of their geographical location and the devices they use. With such a wide reach, it is not surprising that video based learning is ruling the e-learning market.
Let’s first take some time to understand what video-based learning is. It’s the process of gaining knowledge by watching an informative video. In video-based learning, the instructor puts together all the information that he/she wants to convey through audio-visual medium, in such a manner that it catches the attention of the audience. Be it recording yourself lecturing about a topic or explaining through enacting a scenario or just using plain text with voiceovers, these are all varied examples of video-based learning.
Now let’s focus on what makes video based learning popular:
- Videos provide a great platform to convey information in a captivating manner with the help of audio-visual aids.
- It also allows teachers and instructors to delve in deep on a particular topic without the fear of students losing interest.
- Images and sounds have great impact on human minds, and thus it helps students to retain what they have learnt for a longer period of time.
- One of the biggest plus points of video based learning is that it allows students to learn at their own pace. It is a big step towards personalized learning.
Now that we have seen why video-based learning is so big in the e-learning market, it’s time to discuss how to make video learning effective for students so that they can get more out of the entire process. The only key to effective video based learning is creating a video that powerfully drives the idea into the minds of its audience. So let’s focus on how one can create a powerful video lesson from scratch.
Here are a few tricks and tips on creating an effective video for successful video-based learning:
Video-based learning is a goal-driven method to learning. So before you create a video lesson, you need to be clear about what the end goal is. Once you have the answers to questions like what should students take away from this lesson or how this lesson is going to benefit students, you can focus on planning your video around the end objective.
Unconventional Lesson plan
Creating a lesson plan around videos is rather different from what you would create for traditional classroom learning. As video gives you a wide range to explore and experiment with your lesson, don’t feel shy to add unconventional ideas in your lesson plan. Video-based learning gives instructors an opportunity to show different aspects of a lesson that are not possible to address in textbook style teaching. So chuck out the conventional lesson plan and go crazy with your video lesson.
Short and Sweet
One of the problems with video based learning is that the video can meander into off page topics if the instructor doesn’t pay close attention. With so many cool things that you can incorporate in your video, it is quite easy for an instructor to digress into subjects that are not related to the main topic. And when a video lesson shifts its focus from the main topic at hand, it leads to the audience losing interest and thus dilutes the entire learning experience. Apart from the obvious drawback of losing out on the audience, lengthy videos take up more size and are difficult to upload or access from different devices. So, it is better keep it short and sweet.
Voiceovers and Captions
One of the simplest tricks to make your video lesson way better is by adding voice-overs and captions to the video. It might sound like a very small addition to the video, but it does wonders to the overall quality of your video lesson. Voice-overs and captions make it simpler for your audience to understand better and also benefits students with hearing or visual impairments. However, one must understand when to use voice-overs in order to avoid overusing them. Captions and voice-over at right places can magically enhance the experience of video-based learning.
It might sound very basic but a lot of instructors overlook the audio-video quality of the lesson. You might have created an amazing video lesson with interesting analysis but all the effort will go down the drain if your audio-video quality is not good. Watching a poor quality video is an instant turn off for the audience. So there needs to be great emphasis on creating a decent quality video with good quality sound to go with it. You don’t need a high end camera and audio mike to create an effective video. You can record a decent quality video on your cell phone camera and use voice recorders to get clear audio sans interference.
Video lessons are not just meant to impart theoretical knowledge. They can be used to show practical applications as well. For example if you are teaching about how to use a software or an app, you can pepper your video lesson with practical examples by just recording the screen while you use the software/app. This gives your audience a clearer picture about the lesson and minimizes chances of making mistakes while they use the software in real life.
Apart from the aforementioned tips, one can even use animation tools or get in touch with a graphic designer to add extra spark to your video lesson. Although animation is not everyone’s cup of tea, it adds additional value to your video lesson.
Even without animation, you can ensure an impactful video based learning by following the simple tips that I have mentioned above. I hope this article helps instructors and teachers who are new to the world of video based learning.
- Ethan is a dedicated private ESL teacher who also works as an online tutor at various education portals. Apart from his passion for teaching, Ethan loves to write and holds a degree in creative writing. When he is not teaching or writing his book, Ethan loves to blog and is a huge fan of educational technology. You can follow Ethan on Facebook, Twitter and check out his blog on WordPress.