Digi Know: Making videos from Box of Broadcasts more inclusive

Adding subtitles to Box of Broadcasts videos

One of the key features which makes the use of videos from Box of Broadcasts (BoB) more inclusive is to use subtitles. Most programmes on BoB have subtitles available and switching these on whenever you use videos or clips within class can mean understanding what is being said and heard easy for everyone. Simply click on the S icon once the recording has started to play.

screen grap of subtitles button in Box of Broadcasts

This can be particularly important for international students and those who are hearing impaired. It is also a good idea to highlight this feature for students so they are aware how to turn these on when they might be viewing videos outside of face-to-face sessions. Adding a small image of how this can be done next to the video clip in Course Resources might assist with this.

Accessing a transcript for a programme on Box of Broadcasts

Transcripts of most programmes are also available which can be useful for students to access in order to be able to read what has been said in their own time rather than trying to keep up with the video on screen. Where a transcript is available this can be viewed by clicking the Show Transcript button.

Show Transcript button in Box of Boradcasts

It also allows you to search the programme for key words which will be highlighted within the transcript and at the same time the video will move to this point in the video. Further uses of the word can then be cycled to using the forward and back arrows. This enables quick navigation to key points which students may want to view again.

Search transcript screen grab

Students are usually unaware of these features and it is worth highlighting these when you first use BoB whether in class or online.

Digiknow: How to use Lecture recording to support inclusive learning and teaching

room with rope barriers leading to tv

Capturing lecture content, whether in the classroom or from your desk, and making this recording available to students, can give students the opportunity to re-watch content, enhance note taking and revise topics. This assists all students not just those with additional support needs.

However, these recordings can be made more inclusive and useful to students by following a number of simple practices.

Adding notes to the slides

Adding notes to slides, whether within PowerPoint or alongside the lecture recording, can make a big difference to how inclusive this learning resource becomes. Not only does it enable the student to draw upon the key points you make during the recording it also helps to provide an alternative to a transcript of what was said. You can either add notes to the PowerPoint slides in the note section (potentially converting this into a handout) or alongside the slides in your lecture recording.

Making the slides available to download alongside the recording

Making the slides available allows students to annotate and add notes to their slides either manually or digitally. This also makes learning more flexible as some students may want to take the slides with them on the move but would not have the ability to take the recording with them. There are two ways you can add these files, either upload them in Course Resources alongside the link to the recording or add them as a PDF to the recording.

Using holding slides to help students navigate within the recording

Sometimes within a recorded session time may be taken to participate in active learning within class. This part of the lecture recording will become less useful to students. In order to help with navigating past this part of the recording, consider using a place holder slide in your presentation. This makes it easy for students to use the slider to move past this slide and therefore this part of the recording.

Using the keyword search to aid navigation within the recording

You can easily navigate through a lecture recording using the search function, which allows you to use key words to search the recording and notes to get back to specific point in the recording. It then makes where this word occurs and means you can navigate to each point within the recording.

Use the Panopto app to view recordings on your mobile device

You can download and use the Panopto app on Android and iOS (Apple) via the iPad and iPhone to view lecture recordings. This enables you to take them with you on the go.

Making students aware of these features

In order for students to take full advantage of the practices and features of lecture recording which support an inclusive learning experience it is important to inform students how to access these. It might be during the first time lecture recording is used these features are highlighted to students or this is done within a short recording supplied alongside the first lecture.

More on the accessible features of our lecture recording system

Recording trainee teachers’ discussions using Panopto’s student Dropbox with group view


Dr Bill Esmond. Senior Lecturer in Initial Teacher Education: Post 14. College of Education, University of Derby.

Bill’s cohort of trainee FE teachers were considering the current curriculum and the gaps which exist in the teaching of the subject. They had an introductory seminar to consider the issues and then, in small groups, were required to create a video of their discussion which was recorded into a panopto Dropbox. A Dropbox is a special folder that allows students to record presentations to using the Panopto recorder. It can be set to be private so that only the tutor and student can see their recording, or group view, so that everyone in the cohort can view them all. In this case Bill chose group view so that the students could see each others’ work.

A training session for the students went through the basics of Panopto recording, and solved technical problems with installation on students’ computers. For many, this was a new experience, and as Bill says:

“This was clearly a challenging experience for everyone concerned: even trainee teachers are nervous about recording their ideas on shared video, no matter what they might do on [Facebook]. And, yes, there were technical issues: I think most of the Apple people struggled to upload, some sound quality didn’t come out well… and the quality of the medium wasn’t as good as the media teachers would like!”.

However, despite these teething troubles, the result was generally positive.

“But the point of the exercise was really less about the product (the video-clip) than about the process of getting them to discuss ideas in sufficient depth that they felt able to make a video about it. I couldn’t count the number who said to me afterwards how useful they had found the activity because it had made them think about and discuss the issues in far greater depth than they would have done for an open-ended task (and, I suspect, a poster or [Powerpoint]).

So, I think this technology has some potential as a tool for interactive, relatively autonomous learning just as much as it has for the one-way transmission of lectures.”

In summary, although Panopto’s main feature is recording traditional lectures, it contains an option which has the potential to engage students with material in a different way. Analytics of the students’ recordings shows that many of the presentations had at least five unique viewers which means that peers were attending to each other’s’ work.

Using videos in forums for an online course’s student formative assessment


Yasu Kotera (left), Wendy David. UDOL Online Counselling. University of Derby Online (UDOL).

Students from around the world were studying on the University of Derby Online course in Counselling Skills. Part of the assessment involves students recording their counselling sessions for tutors to view and feedback on. Course Resources is limited in the way it handles large files, especially videos, so Yasu and Wendy were pleased to use Media Gallery (Kaltura) as a way of sharing video. In this case, students recorded a short video, usually on their phone, and shared it by embedding it into a forum. This allowed tutors and peers to comment on the video.


In this screenshot, the uploaded video is displayed over the forum which contains a dialogue between the student and tutor.

Yasu comments “I manage the counselling programmes at the University of Derby Online Learning. Our programmes include video assessments, where students record their counselling sessions and the tutors and peers make comments on them. We used to mail those DVDs to evaluate their counselling skills, but as the programme expanded, it just became unfeasible. Then we started to use a file transfer system, but it still took a lot of time to up / download the videos. We had been trying to find a scalable and secure way to conduct the video assessments, and heard about Media Gallery. Media Gallery enables students upload their video easily in a secure way, and the tutors and peers can see and make comments to improve their counselling skills. This is really crucial in the counselling studies online. We are planning to use Media Gallery more in our programmes

Mitigating cancelled lectures with Panopto Lecture Recording


Elaine Conway. Senior Lecturer in Accounting and Finance. College of Business, University of Derby.

Elaine used Panopto Lecture Recording to save the day when she was unable to attend lectures on campus due to an accident. Nearing the end of term, and with students preparing for final exams and assessments, she suddenly became unable to attend a face to face session, and instead used Panopto to record her lectures that students might otherwise have missed due to being rescheduled or having run out of teaching time.

Elaine recorded the presentations at home on her computer using Panopto. These were then uploaded and published directly into Course Resources ready for viewing by the students.

The result was that the students were able to get the materials on time and not miss any crucial information for their exams, and Elaine now has recordings she can use again with just a couple of clicks in a future module.

She said “Overall, the students were appreciative of both the lecture and seminar recordings I made and they have been viewed. I also have the recordings as resource for a future class to help in their revision also. Panopto is a good tool, and as with all tools, not perfect, but it certainly allowed me to deliver to my students despite my incapacity.”

Using Panopto to record feedback to students’ questions posted on a MOOC forum

Jose-Arturo-Garza-Reyes-150 tony-anosike-150
Dr Jose Arturo Garza-Reyes (left) and Dr Tony Anosike.  Academic Innovation Hub, University of Derby Online, University of Derby Business School.

MOOCs are free open online courses becoming that are popular as a way to engage people interested in a subject. The University of Derby’s Academic Innovation Hub have been running highly acclaimed MOOCs, one of which is using Panopto Lecture Recording in an interesting way. As an online course, students are temporally and spatially distanced. Interactions usually occur asynchronously, often via blogs or forums. Students might respond to some materials by posting discussions and questions which the tutor may or may not engage with.

In the Innovating in Operations Management MOOC the tutors, Dr Jose Arturo Garza-Reyes and Dr Tony Anosike, responded to the questions in a “weekly wind up” video recording that answered several of the threads being discussed on that week’s topic.

Using the Learning Enhancement’s Media Team video booth located in B114, the tutors recorded several 30-40 minute feedback discussions covering topics raised that week.

Jose comments: “The experience that we had with Panopto was very positive as it allowed us to communicate with over 2,200 students all over the world without any issue in regards to the different times, and in a more dynamic way. With Panapto, Tony and I had the opportunity of elaborating in specific topics that we considered important for the specific units that we were reviewing every week. Also, we could elaborate on examples requested by the students. For instance, the MOOC content was very oriented towards the manufacturing sector, with plenty of examples regarding this industry. However, the students asked us to provide examples of the application of the Operations Management theory in other industries. We used the Panapto recording sessions to discuss this other examples that were not included in the written content of the MOOC. The Panapto recording sessions also helped us to wrap-up the unit reviewed during that week. The comments of the students were extremely positive, they were eagerly waiting for the recording session to be released every Friday.”

jose tony screenshot

Screenshot of the Panopto recording giving feedback to learners

Feedback from learners about the wind up sessions has been very positive. Students commented:

  • “I guess excellent is the word. Especially the weekly wind up”
  • “It has been well thought out and the wind up each week is also very informative and engaging.”
  • “The weekly wind-up video helped a lot in summarising the course.”
  • “…also the weekly wind up videos deepen the understability of the learners.”

Promoting student creativity in group video assignments

Charles Hancock

Charles Hancock, Senior Lecturer, Derby Business School

What was done?

During the module students were required to research a company and use these findings for their assessments, a group presentation and an individual report.

In previous iterations of the module students were required to do their presentation face-to-face to the rest of their class and the tutor. However, it was decided to change this to a group video presentation, where students could choose the technology they used to create the video.

Why was it done?

This was done in order to:

  • Engage students in the subject
  • Encourage creativity
  • Improve digital literacy skills
  • Increase confidence
  • Improve skills for employability

How was it done?

Designing the assessment

The assessments for the module were split into two parts, with the second part building upon the work done in the first. The first part of the assessment required the students to work in groups to create a group video presentation, outlining the research students carried out on the ethics and social responsibility of local Derby companies. The information gathered during the research could then be used again to form the basis of the individual report submitted for the second assessment. The marking criteria for the assessment was also designed to focus 10% of the marks on the style of the presentation and 90% on the subject matter including how they talk about and evaluate the findings of their research.

Preparing the students

Guidance was given to the students during face-to-face sessions which broke down the assessments aims and objectives, how they could structure their presentation, what they should include and a clear idea of how the work would be marked. The advice around the technology was left quite open so students could use a variety of tools, as long as they submitted the video in the correct format. By not being prescriptive with these instructions, the students were challenged to develop their skills with using technology and work together to find a technology which met their needs and those of the assessment.

Creating the videos

Students used a range of creative and innovative approaches to create their videos; using video cameras, mobile phones, microphones, text-to-speech tools, images, sound, text and video editing software. They utilised these techniques to record interviews, discuss complex models and outline the findings of their research helping the intended audience to retain the information they presented.

Submitting and marking the work

The students were required to submit the video presentation as a Windows Movie File on a DVD. This meant that not only could the academic make sure that they could view the work to mark it, but it could also be viewed by the external examiner for the module. Despite the variety of presentation styles used in the videos, the marking of them was made easier through the criteria concentrating on the content of the presentation rather than the style or technology used.

What worked well?

  • Allowing students to choose which technology they used to create the video presentation helped them to demonstrate their creativity.
  • The assessment design helped them to learn independently not only about the subject area but also how to use the technology available to them.
  • Students were engaged by the assessment and enjoyed taking part in the project, with grades improved compared to the previous method of stand up and talk presentations.
  • Students with English as a second language were able to build their confidence in using English, as they could re-record their voices or utilise other technologies like text-to-speech tools.
  • Provides them with an example to show employers their ability to get messages across to the work force simply and quickly. These transferable skills are particularly beneficial in today’s workplace especially for national and multinational companies.

What were the challenges?

  • Building students’ confidence to do something different – using technology to create a video may be something they are unfamiliar with.
  • Ensuring that other academic staff are on board and comfortable with how the work will be assessed and marked.

What could be done differently next time?

  • To set out more guidance in the sessions before hand to help students space out the workload so that the pressure is not all at the back end of the assessment.
  • To find out from students how familiar they are with creating videos before the project and look at how the groups can be organised to take this into account.

What resources would other people find useful?

  • Clear set of marking criteria and guidelines for you and your students.
  • Examples of the types of video they might create.
  • Information about how to access resources and equipment for recording and editing the videos.

The Media and Learning Conference (Brussels, December 2013)

I attended the Media and Learning Conference 2013 in Brussels at the end of December and found it really thought provoking and enjoyable. It was great to discuss current issues and share practice with participants from all across Europe and the US (I think there were participants from 27 different countries.) I really struggled to pick between the parallel sessions throughout both days, such was the relevance of each topic.


The underlying theme of the conference was Media Literacy and the ‘urgency of embedding digital and media literacy skills amongst the European workforce.’


During the opening plenary, the ‘modern world’ was addressed, with the discussion around whether dramatic and radical change or gradual systematic adaption within the education sector was the right way forward to meet the needs of today.


The representative from the Flemish Ministry of Education and Training in Belgium (a last minute replacement so didn’t catch his name) urged us to take a step back and really put ourselves in the shoes of a teacher/lecturer who wants to incorporate more media based initiatives in their classroom. Diving in to a world where it’s likely their students are more well-versed, the uncertainty of what others are doing in their teaching, the sense of responsibility that comes with the encouragement of recommending and using tools such as Youtube with their students- all factors among many more that could lead a teacher to see using media as making a ‘brave’ choice. For me, this emphasised the importance of ensuring that we share the great work our academics are already doing across the schools, as a means of reassurance to the less experienced/confident people in faculty.


Professor Renee Hobbs (Harrington School of Communication, Rhode Island, USA) had identified a set of ‘motivators’ through assessing teacher’s attitudes to media. When it comes to the reasoning behind and preferred usage of media tools within their teaching, they could be anything from a ‘trendsetter’ (the want to meet students ‘where they live’ by connecting the classroom to popular culture) to an ‘activist’ (encouraging students to use media to ‘address real-world issues.’) We discuss the importance of learner autonomy quite frequently so it was nice to think about teacher preference.


(To find out what kind of ‘motivator’ you are take the test at http://quiz.powerfulvoicesforkids.com)


There were some interesting discussions throughout the day around the use of lecture capture and presentations from institutions who have rolled it out on quite a large scale and those who are at the earlier stages of implementation. We had a discussion around the use of video within it and whether or not this component was actually needed (software typically contains the options of slides with audio, video- which is usually of the lecture itself if it was recorded live or the lecturer presenting to a webcam or similar, plus a means of navigation through the lecture.) Research done at the University of Eastern Finland tracked student’s eye movement when shown a captured lecture and hotspots were equal in measure around the slide content and the lecturer presenting. It was argued that as so much of a proportion of communication is visual, a view of the lecturer was an important element, but it was also argued that there’s no evidence it actually aids learning, even if student’s ‘like’ it. Some institutions have totally gone down the slides and audio route for the ease of rolling out lectures in large quantities.


Thinking about video use in HE in general, we debated the use of both simple and quick un-edited video and of higher-end production (a debate which has cropped up more than any other for me during my time in HE!) as well as looking at quality and what this means in terms of video.


Strong views were held in both the ‘quick and simple’ and ‘planned and scripted’ camps and most agreed there is value in both methods. An academic’s preference was also highlighted as an important factor in this choice- some being comfortable to switch on a webcam and address their students directly and distribute it self-sufficiently, whereas others embrace the scripting and direction from a production team.


Although the quick vs scripted debate was not new to me, in contrast to past debates, ‘quality’ seemed to be universally defined as quality of content instead of quality in a technical sense, which was music to my ears. The quality of video in a technical sense was thought of as a given, owing to the standard of today’s recording devices and available bandwidth. Something that was visibly and (especially) audibly high quality was seen by a lot of us as a minimum standard, the structure and relevance of the video content being the most important factor


As the case usually is, there was a lot of discussion around justifying video use in terms of assessing it against learning theory. It’s relevance as a component of recent trends such as the ‘flipped classroom’ model, the importance of it within social learning theories/participatory teaching methods and assessing it in terms of learning styles were all popular debates. These are no doubt very valid and important topics that underlie nearly everything we do as part of a Technology Enhanced Learning department. However, what I’ll take away with me is that there is a shift now towards the thinking that media with learning ‘is happening’ and that this is equally as important as theory behind it’s justification. No matter why or how we use it, culturally it is part of our every day lives and therefore is a part of education.


Overall, a very worthwhile conference and good to see some of the work going on at the Medea Awards Ceremony in the evening. I left with a lot of confidence in what we are doing here at Derby and excitement about all the new projects and initiatives that we will start in 2014.

5 simple ways you can use video in your teaching

Using video can be a great way to add something extra to your teaching, and it can serve a multitude of purposes, from visualising tough concepts to bringing real life scenarios into the classroom.

At the University of Derby we create many different educational videos to enhance the courses we offer and are lucky enough to have an in-house production team to support this (which includes me!). We also encourage academics to produce their own content and the examples below are all things that could be made with the tools most people will have access to already, like a smartphone, iPad or a laptop.

So, here are 5 simple ways that you can use video in your teaching:

1. Interviewing experts

Bringing outside expertise to your students can be used to prompt discussion or thinking about new ideas. When we have guest speakers at Derby we often ask them to talk to us on camera, and they are usually more than happy to provide extra insight for our students. Interviews like this can be done very quickly and it gives you the chance to ask questions which relate directly to your students or course.

Here’s two examples of expert interviews that have been made recently for our students. The first is a discussion based interview and the second is a more traditional off-camera interview.

I’ve set this to start at 12m55s in:

2. Record your lectures

Why not record what you’re already doing. Lecture recording has many benefits: It creates revision aids, allows students to catch up after authorised absence and can be a great help to learners with English as a second language.

Here’s an example made using our lecture recording system: Electronics Revision Lecture

3. Demonstration videos

Sometimes students may not have the chance to take in a demonstration fully or may need to review aspects of a complicated process. Demonstration videos provide a resource which students can access over and over again, allowing them to pause and review content at their own pace.

Here’s an example made with a visualiser:

4. Student projects

Giving students a video project can sound a bit daunting but you may be surprised by the results. It can inspire creativity in students and give them new skills which increase employability. Resources like the Adobe Education Exchange have communities of educators who share multimedia projects they have had successes with and is well worth checking out.

Video can also be used to capture students reflections on their learning and can be a help to the following year’s cohort when tackling the same projects.

Here’s an example of student reflection:

5. Screencasts

Recording your computer screen and adding commentary to create a screencast can be used in many different ways. You could talk students through an online process or demonstrate a piece of software. Some of our own academics even use this to provide feedback on assignments.

Here’s an example in which we talk students through our our email system:

Whilst some of these examples have been made using professional equipment, you could create good content using a smartphone or an iPad. A 30 second video filmed on a smartphone could give students that vital extra information they need or help them visualise a concept they are struggling with.

….and don’t forget these are reusable resources, content like this can be used across many different related modules and for as long as it remains relevant. That same 30 second video could help thousands of students over many years.

Why not think about how you could use video in your course, everyone has that one question or topic that students ask about over and over again. Maybe a video is the key to helping them.

Follow @DerbyMediaTeam

The Media Production and Support team at the University of Derby can help create a wide range of effective video, audio and multimedia products for your course and also offer training in creating your own content and recording your lectures. This is a free service we offer to our academic staff.

If you would like to speak to someone about creating content for your course or undertaking training, please contact: r.higson@derby.ac.uk or visit http://www.derby.ac.uk/lei/media