Best Practices for Instructional Media

Leonia Houston, CITL & Sandy Schaeffer, Fogelman College (November

Building custom eLearning videos requires significant commitment and effort
to produce. Thus, the decision to produce custom video content should
entail appropriate decision-making on the front-end to ensure the
investment you make will be worth the effort and not drive you crazy. Below
are a few “best practice” ideas for Fogelman faculty to consider when
exploring the idea of custom video content.

#1 – Think before you record

What is the likely shelf-life of the video you are about to produce? How
often will it need to be updated? If it is only good for one semester or
has to be updated on a regular basis, you may want to consider other ways
to convey the same information. Confirm the learning value of the video
content you are planning. Have you identified specific learning objectives
associated with the planned video? Are there alternative methods of
accomplishing the same learning outcomes without building a custom video?
Does it already exist? Make sure that an equivalent video does not already
exist on a public or shareable platform (YouTube, commercial website, etc.)

#2 – Keep it short!

When you decide to build custom video, remember that shorter is better.
Short videos (< 6 minutes) are more likely to be viewed entirely than
lengthy ones. If you need to produce an extended amount of video content,
make sure it is chunked into pieces that are 3-7 minutes in length.

#3 – Plan it: Start with a Script

Always produce a script before you begin recording. This will not only help
you ensure that what you are saying is what you intended to say, but it
will also cut down on retake efforts and post production editing. This same
script can be used to produce the requisite closed-captioning and greatly
reduce the time and cost of ensuring your custom video meets federal ADA
accessibility requirements.

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