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Selecting Software for Tutorials and Screencasting
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Selecting Software for Tutorials and Screencasting


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Presented June 18, 2009, at the 4th Annual Metrolina Information Literacy Conference

Presented June 18, 2009, at the 4th Annual Metrolina Information Literacy Conference

Published in: Technology, Art & Photos

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  • 1. Selecting Software for Tutorials and Screencasting Nina Exner, MLS Evening Services Librarian, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University and Gwen Exner, MLIS Web Master, Psychometric Society Editorial Manager, Psychometrika
  • 2. How many people here already know what screencasting is and how to do it, and just want the technical discussion? How many people want to know more about screencasting first, then get into the tech talk?
  • 3. In this session we will: o Introduce the concept of Screencasting o Discuss common practices in planning a screencasting project for information literacy o Review technical features of screencast- recording software o Present free and paid software options
  • 4.  Video of on-screen movements and actions  Usually (but not necessarily) narrated  Can be produced in multiple formats  Faster and easier than designing and making Flash videos from scratch  Most useful for creating videos of things people do on the computer
  • 5. asic_search_academic_tut/basic_search_acade mic_tut.htm ation08-short.html =46296&sid=342129
  • 6.  Natural choice for teaching online tools Especially demonstrating databases!  Can be used for any sort of brief demo  Great for embedding in Blackboard But…  Harder to add „critical thinking‟ into Planning and good scripting are essential!
  • 7.  Decide on your goals and keep them in mind  Plan and script!!  Allow plenty of time to record, re-record, re-re-re…  Know where you‟ll put them Hosting: library server, paid host, etc. Where to „embed‟? Where‟s the audience?  Establish the workflow in advance Branding? Consistent look-and-feel?
  • 8.  Keep your audience in mind. Stay student- centered Avoid unnecesary jargon Stay as brief as possible Break different aspects into separate videos  For elaborate DL classes, consider “scaffolding” by creating series that build on each other Connect instruction and technology. …Do you need advanced features?
  • 9. There are many products out there that can be used for screencasting. Any video or animation editing software can probably make screencasts. But specialty software is usually easier (especially for non experts). Specialty video capture / screencasting software can include other value-added functionality
  • 10. Remember to develop goals and keep them in mind! What do you need this for?  Mainly technical introductions and help?  Longer class-like recordings? Budgetary constraints Technical needs such as… Formats, file size Teaching Tech: quizzes, CMS integration Effects, callouts, A&V editing, captions
  • 11. Features Ease of use Price
  • 12. Three tiers of pricing:  “High ticket” paid software The “gold standards” usually mentioned in the literature: Adobe Captivate ($249) and Camtasia ($179)  “Low” price paid software Small companies, downloadable software Free software Open source or Freeware
  • 13. Can include many usability factors:  Easy to install  Simple, intuitive interface Warning: geek presenters Straightforward workflow Help files  Tutorials
  • 14. Input options Audio Importing •Individual graphics •Video from other sources oold videos ocamcorder images Video in video Powerpoint
  • 15. Editing Video oResizing is very helpful oCut and paste, crop, image adjustments Audio oHow robust is it? How much do you need? File-size Optimization oDo you need it? oFrame-rate control, guidance on formats, etc
  • 16. Instructional concerns Accessibility: Captioning Quiz support What kinds of quizzes are suported? How can results be delivered? SCORM-compatible = Blackboard
  • 17. The bells and whistles Callouts On-screen notes Special effects Combining videos into multipart modules Table of contents & other navigation Transitions, title clips, branding Custom Flash integration If you can do this, you are in the wrong session! …but could you teach me?
  • 18. If no one program has what you want… How about two programs?
  • 19. We have tried to provide lists of the features and trade-offs we found in various screencasting products. Three sources we used to find products: Comments or questions about the handouts?
  • 20. “High” ticket: Camtasia $179.00 “Low” ticket: UV ScreenCamera $50 Free ride – more features: Wink Free Ride – user friendly: CamStudio or Jing if you like a highly visual interface
  • 21. •Includes some basic quizzes oIf you need robust quiz support you need Captivate •Pros oReally good help files and tutorials oFairly easy to use for basics, but a good amount of features for “power” users oLots of output formats oLots of bells and whistles •Cons oPrice oMenus aren‟t intuitive, have to hunt for settings oFunctions in multiple modules (Recorder, Studio, etc)
  • 22. •Pros oInexpensive, with an infinite free trial oFree trial disables many output options oModerately easy interface oCan edit video and audio •Cons oNot free, and no quizzes either oCurrently having eCommerce trouble
  • 23. Linux version available. Open Source. •Pros oFree oMany options for file optimization, custom callouts, audio & video editing •Cons oVery steep learning curve, very tedious oOnly help is a manual – not very good, bad index oFew output formats
  • 24. Not affiliated with Camtasia •Pros oFree oEasy interface oGrab and go recording •Cons oFew options oIt may disappear – has a strange history
  • 25. Made by the same people who make Camtasia •Pros oFree! oPicture-based interface, very visual oNot many ways to get distracted oGrab and go •Cons oPicture-based interface, very visual oFew options; only Flash output o5 minute limit oMust be logged in at all times
  • 26. What could you use screencasts for at your library? What issues would you consider (or are you considering) in a screencast project in your library? What features are essential in a program for your project?
  • 27. Thank you for your time and attention! Nina Exner, MLS Evening Services Librarian, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University and Gwen Exner, MLIS Web Master, Psychometric Society Editorial Manager, Psychometrika