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The When and How of Using Live Video for eLearning

Two of the most common questions I hear when clients are thinking about using videos in elearning are: when should I use it and of course, how do it do it? There are many types of short videos that can be used; whiteboard animation, videos using animated characters and live videos with real people acting.

Some people love animated videos and some people despise them, but we have been tasked with filming live shoots for numerous clients that have decided to go this route. I will identify some key steps that you should keep in mind when thinking about when and how to use it.

When to Use Video

  • To emphasize an important concept or point

  • To demonstrate how-to-do, how not to do, or a specific task

  • To reduce reading loads for learners

  • When you need a more emotional appeal than images and text can deliver

  • To model behaviour or interpersonal skills

High-Level Steps to Create an Effective Video

  • Decide which content will be presented through video

  • Decide if you will Do-It-Yourself or hire a professional videographer

  • Script and create a shot-by-shot storyboard

  • Schedule videographer, actors, location, sound & lighting technician

  • Record the video

  • Edit the video using editing software

  • Compress and render the video

  • Insert video into e-learning course

  • Provide learners with software requirements for accessing the video

Remember those are high-level steps and some of them can be quite involved, and require you to get into the weeds. However, it is necessary as a poorly crafted video of low quality will do more harm than good, especially when almost any screen you look at these days is high-definition.

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