Sprinkle technology sparingly (Video bites) 2

In my last post I mentioned how the main ‘light bulb moment’ from the session on social media I ran with a group of our staff was about using video to promote their education. It was funny how a concept of recording something, which I actually started doing whilst at HCC five years ago had never really struck the people who were sat in that room at that time.

On this particular day, we started to talk about how the education leads could record short videos showing the practical skills which they have to teach staff to do, and then these could be shared with the staff, so they could learn, or refresh their knowledge of the skill. The discussion then expanded to talk about how video could be used to record talks and introductions for courses, ensuring that those who hadn’t been present on the day could still be involved. The irony of all of this was that I had a video camera set up at that exact moment, recording all of the things which were said/done.

Just a week after the session, Craig Taylor posted this blog post (The Ones That Got Away – Video Stories). Craig talks about using video to capture video stories so that staff can share their techniques, or in some cases, the things which went wrong – to allow others to learn from their successes, or to avoid their failures.

Then this morning, I was holding a conversations with Craig (@CraigTaylor74) and Alistair (@acockroft) about authoring tools when Craig added:

The irony of this comment from Craig is that this is already an area I’m trying to exploit. Weeks ago, I had already set one of my developers the task that in the next year she needs to deliver two pieces of e-learning which don’t involve a single ‘next’ button. Add to this that a few days after the original session, we also released our first e-learning package (which was IT System Training) which included short video clips (like the stories mentioned in Craig’s blog) which allowed influential figures within the organisation to talk about the importance of the small data items within the system.

The videos I used in this package were to allow staff to relate the need for a small amount of information to the bigger impact on the organisation. They were simple “talking heads” – but they were heads that people knew, heads that people speak to on a daily basis, heads that people know and respect – and this creates the familiarity and simplicity which makes it easier for the user to relate to – and ultimately action.

I will always remember one of the most simplistic videos I have ever seen. The video was created to train nursing staff how to use a patient system which runs on iPods/iPhones. In this video, the camera simply records over the shoulder of the nurse who is using the system. There is no sound, no lengthy text captions and instructions – just a simple 2 minute silent video. Yet in this simplicity – came the most powerful tool as nurses could easily see how the system is used and understand how they could use it in the same way.

It all just proves – there’s no need to make it expensive, fill it with hours of talking or huge amounts of different people – just deliver content in a simple way which the users can relate to – and they will relate and learn. My only issue now is that I still use an authoring tool to ‘wrap’ my videos to allow for completion tracking – maybe I need a better way of doing this. Perhaps I have a use for Tin Can API after all…..

2 thoughts on “Sprinkle technology sparingly (Video bites)

  • Craig Taylor

    Hi Nick,

    Thanks for the mention.

    In terms of providing some way of completion tracking for videos (if you have to go down the tracking route), then I’m fairly sure that the more recent versions of Moodle allow completion tracking of video views???

    I’m not 100%, but it might be worth checking out?


    • Nick Post author


      Always a pleasure!

      It’s not necessarily about me needing to track the completion – but for some of our leads – the video could actually form ‘compliance’ – and for this they want to know that the person has “viewed” the content – and not just skipped to the end! I’ve not delved too deeply into it from a Moodle perspective (as usually we would embed from Vimeo/You Tube) – but the leads would want to ensure that the user hadn’t just skipped to the end!

      I will look into it more though…..

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