Five Things to Consider: eLearning Authoring Tools for Audio, Video, Screencasts


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This presentation is taken from my blog posts and discusses the value of "moving

media" (audio, video, screencasts, and flash animation) to eLearning courses, the

skill needed to create them, options for authoring tools, functionality needed in the

tools, and how they work within an LMS. This is # 2 in a series of 9. Others in the

series discuss these same Five Things for Graphics, Assessments, News & Events,

File Sharing, Collaborative Works, Student Records, HTML Content, and Distribution

(LMS). Read the full story at

Published in: Technology, Education
1 Comment
  • Hi Penny Mondani. I have been in the elearning sector for quite some time & what I have experienced is, one of the most important aspects of choosing an eLearning authoring tool is convenience versus creative freedom. Many of the more complicated eLearning software offerings allow you to control every element of your eLearning design, from the layout to the visual components. On the other hand, those that may be easier to use, such as pre-made templates, don't enable you to have as much freedom in terms of what you include in your overall eLearning design. So, while choosing the ideal eLearning authoring tools, you'll have to consider whether you want flexibility or convenience.
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Five Things to Consider: eLearning Authoring Tools for Audio, Video, Screencasts

  1. 1. Five Things to Consider When Choosing eLearning Authoring Tools Moving Media: Audio, Video, Screencasts 2 nd in a series of 9
  2. 2. About This Presentation This PowerPoint Show is taken from my blog Penny For Your Thoughts: Simplifying e-Learning for Business , where the posts can be read in their entirety.
  3. 3. What is an Authoring Tool? <ul><li>A pencil and a piece of paper.  </li></ul><ul><li>A knife and a tree large enough to carve something in the trunk.  </li></ul><ul><li>An eLearning authoring tool is software that allows us to create and publish our material in electronic format.  </li></ul><ul><li>Wikipedia says: “ An authoring tool is a software package which developers use to create and package content deliverable to end users.”   </li></ul>
  4. 4. Five Things <ul><li>Will it add value? Based on the training design for my audience, what features and functionality do I need?  Which are nice to have?  Which are not relevant? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we have the skill to do it or the time to learn it?  What can I (or my employees) do and what should we contract out to others?  Is this how we should be spending our time?  </li></ul><ul><li>What are my options?  What applications are out there and what are the trade-offs regarding price, ease of use, and capability? Which is better:  Open Source or proprietary software? </li></ul><ul><li>What functionality do I need? What do I need the application for?  To create, to edit, to view, all of that?  What will my students want it for and what is best for them ?  What applications are highly specific and which are “multi-taskers” that I can get more value from? </li></ul><ul><li>Will it work in my LMS? How will these applications work together in my eLearning environment? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Features of GREAT eLearning <ul><li>Graphics (pictures, illustrations, tables, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Moving Media (audio, video, flash animation, screen casts </li></ul><ul><li>Assessments (quizzes, tests, surveys) </li></ul><ul><li>News (forums, RSS, streaming) </li></ul><ul><li>File sharing (students and teachers; uploading and downloading) </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative efforts (web meetings, chats, wikis) </li></ul><ul><li>Student “records” (grades, participation, profiles) </li></ul><ul><li>HTML (text, links, etc.) content </li></ul><ul><li>LMS to package it all up together and deliver it to the students. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Will it Add Value? <ul><li>Audio: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>For the auditory learners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>For a change of pace </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When sound is the lesson </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Video & Flash: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>For the visual learners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When the topic is too complex to describe </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>For fun, to break up the monotony </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To demonstrate that what we see isn’t always what was there. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Screencasts & Flash: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>For software training in conjunction with static screen prints. </li></ul></ul>Yes, if it reinforces the lesson and isn’t just for its own sake. All courses should have some “moving media”.
  7. 7. Do I Have the Skill? <ul><li>Can you speak comfortably into a microphone? </li></ul><ul><li>Can you do so without drifting off or humming and hawing? </li></ul><ul><li>Can you narrate while you’re navigating? </li></ul><ul><li>Do you know how to edit (cut and piece together) audio and video? </li></ul><ul><li>Do you understand lighting and sound; can you “direct” or record accordingly? </li></ul>
  8. 8. What Are My Options? <ul><li>Presentations with audio and animation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Articulate Engage (about $300) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PowerPoint Show (viewable w/o PowerPoint) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Simple screen recordings: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Articulate Screenr (free, publishes to Twitter) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many others for free or very low cost </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Professional quality screen recordings & edits: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Captivate, Camtasia, Screenflow </li></ul></ul><ul><li>YouTube (free & numerous) </li></ul><ul><li>Professional video, animation, flash </li></ul>
  9. 9. What Functionality Do I Need? <ul><li>Must have: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Audio recording ability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Screen capture software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to save in various formats (.swf, mp3, mp4, .flv, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Should have: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to do simple edits to audio files and/or add sound effects </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to add notations to screen captures </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Nice to have: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Screen recording that captures mouse movement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to edit and reuse </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Don’t need: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Anything that does not fit the audience or situation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Anything that does not reinforce the lesson </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Will this Tool Work in My LMS? <ul><li>Probably, but... </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Check to see what format it accepts. It is usually possible to embed a video rather than upload the actual file. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Check to see what file sizes (bytes) are allowed. Videos can be huge, so embed them whenever possible. </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Next Time... <ul><li>Assessments </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Quizzes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tests </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Follow me...Contact me <ul><li>Read the rest of this post and more at </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Follow me on Twitter/PennyMondani </li></ul><ul><li>Join me on LinkedIn (/in/PennyMondani) </li></ul><ul><li>View Moodle Demo Courses at </li></ul><ul><li>Learn more at </li></ul><ul><li>pmondani @ </li></ul>