Volunteered to be on the committee.Being given the assignment (broad and specific) by Administration.Each of us in this committee had worked at the library for only 1-2 years and had varying backgrounds, comfort levels with technology, etc. Previous attempts in prior year(s) by others to do this same thing had not been successful, which challenged us to discover the secret.
What elements do we want to teach in each session? Audience needs - what are they and how do we meet their needs? Easy to use (keep it SIMPLE)Easy to remember (keep it SIMPLE)Functionality – How to determine what makes it functional?Building on ideas Is each session a separate entity?Are we trying to build on ideas?)
Screen capture vs PowerPoint presentation via CamtasiaWork flow - one person do A-Z, or one to script, one to record, one to edit. Keeping track of sequencing of steps from first model so we don't recreate the wheel with each screencast.Development of "best practices" from initial session(s) (what makes best practices?)
How to measure progress we make in preparing the sessionGoals v “Success?”How closely are we meeting our original expectations?How to test project on user group. Who to use for this step – Students in LibraryFriendsStudent workers in Library
I would remove “how to do” or restate: What skills did we need before we started to produce the tutorials.?
Our understanding of the charge given to us.The order in which we would create the projects.A simple, sample storyboard for the first project.A timeline – detailed for first project (by week, by task) and then more generalized by date/month for the other two projects.
Helped fulfill portions of our Libraries’ Mission and Plan.This project was seen by Administration and ILIS as answering student needs and being a service issue (especially as we are going forward with more distance learning classes)ILIS met several times to discuss which tutorials were the most important. We were part of that ILIS committee and also took part in the discussions and gave input.
By Administration and ILISFrom multiple departments and individuals Made this more of a cooperative effort for the libraries Not just a project by Reference Librarians.Confirm accuracy of information presented with other departments.
How to estimate the timeSoftware not previously usedresearch the amount of time for each task, while we were all working on other projects at the same time and continued to have multiple duties.Meet multiple times with our calendars to consider and decide the feasibility of what we planned, and when it could be completed. A timeline was developed by us and included as part of our Proposal I would say “include” as part of our Proposal (above)
Establishing goals and mileposts. (Necessary in order to create a workflow.) I made a separate sentence and added parentheses.We explored how each other worked best in different situations (brainstorming, storyboard, research, production, etc.), and also which tasks appealed most to each of us.We also developed a sense of each other’s strengths and weaknesses as we worked on the workflow. We scheduled assignments to correspond to these, and then mentor each other after we had successfully completed a task.We based a lot of the initial workflow on the research we did of how other people worked with Camtasia and their Best Practices.
Research was necessary. Centralized our research via Delicious.com bookmarks.Camtasia category – anything relating to Camtasia.TechSmith category – items produced by TechSmith, who created Camtasia.
Google searched for completed projects by other universities. (especially those with comments.)Gleaned advice and tips from these sites, i.e.,Size of recording screen KISS (keep it simple, stupid)Tips for using microphone (we used Kleenex over our microphone to soften our consonants.) Searched for Best Practices from other universities, knowing that a lot of these same items could later become our Best Practices.Realized that revisions would be made to our assumptions throughout the creative process, and that we had to be flexible in our expectations and methods.Technology is constantly changing, so what appeared to be good information might actually be dated. Regularly monitor changes in programs and technology applications.
What elements make for a good podcast?, one that students will want to view, can understand and one of which we would be proud?ADA compliant (picture, printed words, spoken words)Ability to rewind or replay, speed up, etc. Focus on topicSimplicityLength of podcast (3-5 minutes maximum)Transitions between PowerPoint, Screenshots and ScreencaptureConsistency in the presentation of the content (opening slide with introduction, body, closing slide(s) with key points to remember)
Decide on topic to cover, based on consensus or preference.For example, our first tutorial was on “How to do a Basic Search in the Library catalog”.
This is what you have to cover. Supplement the outline with minor steps and procedures, no majorly detailed. For example, here is the content outline for our basic search tutorial….it includes the following:
Goals, expectations, roles….topics, Remember to take notes on topic- another mini brainstorming effort. Don’t include but keep-(As if you were going to teach someone how to do something by providing the steps)Provides some ideas and guidance for you.Move from notes to a list and then outline.
Create an outline prior to doing each screencast. Provides organization and structure, including transitioning within your screencast.Ensures that your major points are covered.
It is evident that the process of creating an outline evolves…it certainly gets easier with time. Here is our first and third outline that we created.
We divided the work amongst the three of us throughout the entire process with one person doing the outline while the other do did the script. For example, here is the script that we used for our basic search tutorial.
ScreenshotsImagesPhotographsPower point slides
Screenshots:For example if you are going to show how to access an electronic book from outside the library, perhaps you would include a catalog record for an electronic book in the images.
A storyboard serves as a visual representation of what you want to accomplish through your tutorial.. We divided the work among the three of us throughout the entire process, so while one person did the outline, the others worked on the script and story board, with feedback from each other throughtout the process. You might want to start looking for graphics and images to include, if you aren’t very saavy at finding images on the web. You can always use them for future tutorials.
We used a storyboard to map out our screencast, but perhaps you want to do more of a film/comic strip and use pencil and paper. This is another good way to map out your screencast prior to production. Three examples of how you might want to map out the story with some visuals and basic directions.
Note the script and the images.
I strongly discourage you from beginning to record your screencast until you receive the approval to do so from all supervisors involved with your project. From experience, this is arduous work, and anything that contributes to making it flow more simply is advisable.
Consider all feedback…also consider the population you are making the tool for….
Documenting these complex tasks can help if the software changes and/or if you end up taking a hiatus from working on these screencasts.
This is dependent upon your library, we updated on a monthly basis. Also, it is important to troubleshoot any issues as extensively as possible prior to stating that something is or is not a possibility.
Embrace trial & error.Turn it around to identify better or best practices.
Make changes as seen fit!
Camtasia can record narration during screen shots and also during a PowerPoint presentation.NOTE: I don’t know if “make” is the best word, or “do”… whatever was there before I changed it didn’t work for me. =)
NOTE: I made a lot of adjustments on this slide, including spacing, etc.
NOTE: I changed wording here… don’t know if it says what you were intending.
One time, our final recording was not approved!We were given initial directions on how the screencast was to be distributed to Digital Libraries for posting, though this gradually changed.
We revisited the initial charge and notes, and then created an additional screencast, with a third one in the works.
Kristy Padron Alyse Ergood Lauri RebarFlorida Atlantic University Libraries
◦ What are you expected to do?◦ What are the goals for this project? ◦ Overall for all screencasts? ◦ Each individual screencast?◦ Who do you report to? ◦ How often do you need to check in with them?
What elements do we want to teach in each session? Audience needs What are they and how do we meet their needs? Easy to use (Keep it SIMPLE) Easy to remember (Keep it SIMPLE) Functionality Building on ideas
Screen capture vs PowerPoint presentation Work flow – One person do A-Z? Or one to script, one to record, one to edit? Keeping track of sequencing of steps from first model Dont recreate the wheel with each screencast. Development of "best practices" from initial session What makes best practices?
How to measure progress we make in preparing the session Goals v “Success?” How closely are we meeting our original expectations? Step back and modify goals and expectations How to test project on user group. Who to use for this step – Students in Library Friends Student workers in Library
Proposal Outline Storyboard PowerPoint / Screenshots Recording (including above and screencapture) Production (deleting pauses, syncing sections, editing narration) PostProduction (preparing it for the Web) Posting it to the Web
Created a proposal for Administration. Developed our proposal based upon sample proposals we had found online. The proposal allowed us to Clarify our task. State the “who, why, where, what, when and how” of the entire project.
Fulfill portions of our Libraries‟ Mission and Plan. Answering student needs Answering a service issue Answering ILIS (information literacy and information services) needs and goals
By Administration and ILIS From multiple departments and individuals Created more of a cooperative effort for the libraries Not just a project by Reference Librarians. Confirm accuracy of information presented with other departments.
How to estimate the time? Research the amount of time for each task. Meet multiple times with our calendars. Included as part of our Proposal. Adjust timeline as we progress.
Establish goals and mileposts. Explore how each team member works best in different situations. Develop a sense of each other‟s strengths and weaknesses as we worked on the workflow. Initial workflow based on the research we did.
Research !!! Centralized our research via Delicious.com bookmarks. Camtasia category – anything relating to Camtasia. TechSmith category – items produced by TechSmith, who created Camtasia.
Google-searched for completed projects by other universities. Gleaned advice and tips from these sites: Size of recording screen. KISS (keep it simple, stupid). Tips for using microphone. Searched for Best Practices from other universities. Flexibility in our expectations and methods. Technology is constantly changing.
What elements make for a good podcast? ADA compliant picture, printed words, spoken words Ability to rewind or replay, speed up, etc. Focus on topic Simplicity Length of podcast (3-5 minutes maximum) Transitions between PowerPoint, Screenshots and Screencapture Consistency in the presentation of the content opening slide with introduction, body, closing slide with key points to remember
Get input from your supervisors and the various librarydepartments including: information literacy and instructiondepartment, reference, systems, and more. Consensus Incorporate feedback Work from the greatest need Start simple
Brainstorm your ideas, your process Identify the objective, procedure and steps and begin pulling information together. Write it down.
This will act as a guide and structure for pre-production. Identify the major points and steps for what needs to be included in the tutorial. Break down the difficult steps into smaller steps, and add any minor points; they may end up supporting the needed transitions. This outline does not need to be detailed, as much as it needs to be comprehensive.
Once the content outline has been reviewed and is solid, use it to write the script for each individual screencast. Why write a script? The result is a more polished, professional product. The script details what will be said throughout the screencast, realizing it will be edited several times prior to producing the screencast. Must be clear, concise and explicit.
Let‟s start by going to FAU‟s home page, located athttp://www.fau.edu/
Identify graphics to go with script and to include in screencast.
Personalize the screencast for patrons whenever possible. ◦ Using PowerPoint, create a slide to introduce your project and the librarian narrating the screencast with an actual or avatar picture of the narrator. For the final piece of your screencast, create a summary slide in PowerPoint with „Key Points to Remember‟ from the screencast. ◦ This is especially helpful for patrons when there is a lot of information presented.
Create a storyboard with the script and identified graphics. PowerPoint is a great tool to use to create a storyboard. Check storyboard for accuracy of topic you are teaching. It is imperative that your script match the graphics being described. Check or edit any transitions.
At the beginning of the project, set up aworkflow feedback and approval process with adminand other supervisors and all interested parties. As you receive feedback and approval, you will be empowered in the production process. It will keep the process flowing smoothly. It was imperative for us to get feedback upon completion of the script, storyboard and the screencast prior to making it public. Do not record your screencast until you have received approval to do so.
This is a time-consuming process, due to the learning curve required for most software. Track activities, progress, and difficulties, including procedures and simple tips. Maintain detailed instructions for reference. Record all meetings, feedback received, status/stage of your screencast, suggestions, and timelines (i.e., deadlines).
Working in a team environment with a team leader is an effective way to divide tasks and complete a timely screencast. Divide tasks between group members. This same individual can keep your supervisors and administrators abreast of your process, progress and concerns.
Practice speaking and recording on the microphone. Work on comfort level with using a microphone and with hearing your recorded voice. Get comfortable reading and practicing a script with microphone. Pay attention to your pace and pronunciation throughout the practice session. You may or may not need to make changes in your speaking and presentation from observations made during practice. Most tutorials are only three to five minutes. Decide on microphone that suits you, your group, and your voices.
To practice, access a free and similar software called Jing from the creators of Camtasia, Techsmith, at www.jingproject.com.
Expect a learning curve during which you will learn A LOT of new skills. Consult with tutorials as needed (www.techsmith.com). Embrace trial & error. ◦ Be patient, supportive and generous with smiles! Utilize individual skills and interests, and apply them to the various roles. Become familiar with software features: identify what works best for you and your project.
Rehearse to get comfortable with everything! ◦ Use the storyboard to arrange screen transitions and narrations. ◦ Check the microphone for sound quality and adjust it, if necessary. ◦ If using the Internet, decide on what will be visible on the computer screen (URL, menus, etc.). ◦ If you are comfortable with your task, production (and everything thereafter) will go smoothly!
Example: Recording with Screen Shots (Top) Before recording: determine the screen size and what will be recording for a screen capture. (Bottom) During recording: see ‘Audio’ for sound quality, and also the keys for stopping and restarting recording.
Be familiar with the features needed for the type of recording you want to make. Expect to have multiple takes… be flexible. Again, be generous in your patience (especially towards yourself). If you make a mistake, pause, then try again. Script edits, updates, and good ideas often appear at this point.
Production roles can be assigned by interest or rotated to promote familiarity with the technology. ◦ Roles were changed periodically so we could each master the software and the different responsibilities attached to each role. Narrator (the voice) Producer (recording) Editor (editing and cutting) More technical aspects as well as nuts & bolts of production can be found in our “Best Practices” document.
After the screencast was recorded, editing needed to be done. Editing uses different tools within the Camtasia software than those used during production. ◦ Examples: cutting, call-outs, Zoom-n-Pan PowerPoint and Internet screen actions become sewn together at this point. ◦ “Import” features are used. ◦ This required the use of the “slice” feature and others not so readily familiar to many.
When editing was completed, we distributed our “final draft” for approval. After approval, the screencast was ready to be posted to the web. ◦ Final production was assisted by the Systems and Digital Libraries departments. ◦ This presented another layer of expertise that we had to learn or at least become familiar, including: file and sound formats, and other technical aspects of making it be web-ready.
Production Wizard:specifies the type offormat used for webcasting, in additionto sound, screensize, and otherfactors.
During pre-production and production, we kept careful notes about how things were done. We compiled what worked for us. We recognized that due to our assignments, priorities, and some unknowns, we could not finish the project in one concentrated block of time. We gradually created a Best Practices document for future reference to be used when producing future screencasts. This document permitted us to share and distribute what we learned through our collective experience.
We were asked to advise how this project should proceed. “It ain‟t easy…” Create screencasts on topics that impact the highest number of library users. Beware: content changes rapidly! Recommended changes to the initial idea of how Camtasia would be used in the department.The project was later continued.
Screencasts were later used in other libraryprojects, especially with social tools(LibGuides, YouTube, etc.).
The Camtasia project generated a life of its own! We had: ◦ a continuity plan, ◦ careful records, ◦ other supporting documentation, ◦ and most importantly, THE INTEREST!
Thank you for your participation and interest! Kristy Padron – kpadron (at) fau.edu Alyse Ergood – aergood (at) fau.edu Lauri Rebar – lrebar (at) fau.edu FAU Reference: (561) 297-3780