Editing video for eLearning modules
When you are editing a video for your eLearning project, you can include background music, stock photos or videos, text on screen, transitions, etc., all of which may be acquired. If it’s a video you filmed on location, keep in mind that there is always a small chance that you might need to re-record some of the scenes due to several issues, like changes in script or even faulty footage that you didn’t pick up earlier in your production.
For this part of the video production, you need to catalogue your footage and choose those video clips that better adjust to the overall purpose of the project, ideally footage in which the talent doesn’t make mistakes, or footage from where you can extract useful pieces of video.
In terms of software, there are plenty of options out there that cater to different needs and users, from basic video editors (like the old Windows Movie Maker) to more professional solutions like Adobe Premiere (the one we use to do all our editing). Also, you might need to consider other software, like Audacity or Adobe Audition (for audio editing), or Adobe After Effects (for compositing, colour correction, and VFX in general).
Speaking of colour correction, it is important to know when it must be done and up to what degree it must be done. Depending on your project, your client, the lighting conditions during the video shoot, this is a step that usually happens (or at least in our case for training videos) after creating the rough cut of the video (a rough cut, is a version of the video in which the footage to be used is put together so that you can see how the video flows from beginning to end, no need to add VFX or color correction during this stage), and it involves adjusting colour levels to make the scene look colder, or warmer, or simply to try and make it look as close as possible to the original colours of the scene (artificial lights and even cameras, may add hues to the video, depending on the settings).
Then, you also must edit your audio; if you are working with Adobe Premiere, I would suggest using Adobe Audition, since they both share a connection that allows you to edit the audio in Audition and see the results in Premiere almost immediately. This step involves reducing the background noise and deleting parts in which there are sounds either from the actors or an external source that weren’t planned for the video. You must be careful, though, if you over do it with reducing the noise, you might cause the audio to be muffled and have a poor quality. One of the strategies we use sometimes, when reducing the noise is very difficult, it’s to add a background music, that will help masking this noise from the microphones, but then again, be careful as to not make this music too loud and mask the actors’ voices as well.
Post-production also involves adding text on screen to accentuate key messages that you want to transmit to the learner, and also to identify different points that the actors are mentioning.
In some cases (like in our project) you might need to mask the background to remove certain undesired things that are visible; there are a lot of ways to do that, you would just need to find the one that better adjusts to your needs/capabilities, or you can even come up with your own way to key out the background of your shot (this is usually done with a green screen).
All in all, all the work that you do during the post-production phase of your project, will result in the final render of your video, that you can then distribute using your desired platform.