Web Video

Video and Audio production

A number of faculty members have expressed interest in using video and audio in their classes using the Internet or web to distribute the materials. Here are some of our initial recommendations about technology selection as well as tips for recording. Please keep accessibility strategies in mind when designing course materials. Also, here’s a link to crash course on basic video lighting.

For talking heads only… Consider a web cam. It’s cheaper than video cameras. It’s also stationary and sometimes even comes as standard equipment on your computer. If you use a webcam, the recording can easily be saved to your computer hard drive.


Classroom or outside events… Consider a smartphone or video camera – If you want to record classroom events or tape an event outside, you can borrow a video camcorder from the FRC. You can then download the recordings directly to your computer or to one of the FRC image/video capture stations.

Voice-only – Consider a USB microphone or headset (mic and headphone). We like the Logitech brand. You can purchase these from Frye’s Electronics or from CompUSA.com

Screen recordings or demonstrations…

If you want to record a screen demonstration or even Powerpoint presentation with your voice, you can use screen recording software such as Snagit or Camtasia studio available from Creationengine.com for a reduced price. Both of these products are great products though we currently have a license for Snagit so it's free for faculty use. Adobe Captivate is also a fine product but has added features that you can use to require students to perform behavioral tasks before proceeding through a tutorial. Snagit comes with a free screencast.com account that provides up to two gigabytes of web server space per individual but the videos are limited to 5 minutes in length. It also lacks many of the features that Camtasia has. If you want to create a screen recording, you will also need a microphone to narrate your presentations like the one shown above.

Recording Tips

  • The content of single recordings should address no more than one to two topics, i.e., it is better to create more videos than to cram a lot of topics into one video.
  • Practice your recording two or three times before actually recording it. The goal is to make your videos as concise as possible removing all unnecessary language or steps.
  • Record in a quiet room; unplug the telephone, etc., to reduce the chance of extraneous noise.
  • Close all applications on your computer that you will not be using for the recordings.
  • If you make use of the Webcam feature, make sure you have plenty of light so that your face is not hidden in room shadows.
  • Make sure you have plenty of light so that your face isn’t hidden in room shadows.
  • Do a microphone sound level and video picture check prior to recording.
  • Record in the morning or when your voice is the freshest. A tired voice lacks enthusiasm.
  • Keep your recordings short if possible, i.e., less than five and no more than 10 minutes at the most.
  • If you do a screen recording, reduce your computer display resolution via your computer system control panel to 1080 (W) by 720 (H) before you do the recording. After the recording, change your display size back to the resolution it was before you changed it. This technique will produce a demonstration that is more likely to fit all the display resolutions of students, especially those who have older computer displays.
  • Use the mouse and software’s cross hairs to capture ONLY that portion of the window you want to record.
  • Wait 2 seconds after you select the record button in your screen recording software because it may take a second or two for your computer to start recording.
  • If you are creating several videos that will be accessed from a table of contents, make sure your video display capture sizes are the same size; otherwise, your movies will not fit neatly into the video display window.
  • If you intend on using this video more than once OR if you know you have students who are hearing impaired, you MUST have the video captioned. Currently, the College was awarded some grant funds to caption videos for use in distance education classes. Contact Laurie Vasquez in the FRC at X2724 or at vasquez@sbcc.edu for more info.
  • Upload your video to Youtube.com or 3CMedia.com in order to stream/present your videos.

Editing your video

We don’t recommend that you edit video unless you want to spend a lot of time. Some free video editing software packages (IMovie for Apple and MovieMaker for Windows) are easy to use but still consume your time and take up hard drive space.

Uploading your video to a web site for viewing

If you use a video camera, you need to download/save your recording to your computer so you can upload it to website for viewing. Once your video is ready to be presented, you can upload it to a variety of video sources such as Youtube or 3CMedia Solutions. Each faculty member has his/her own Youtube space available through the college and faculty can set up their own free space in 3CMedia sites as well. Please contact the David, Jeff, Karen, or Rob in the FRC for help.

Ideas for copyrighting your materials

Creative Commons – sharing your materials with others but retaining some rights if you want to… Here is a form on their site that helps you decide how to license your materials. http://creativecommons.org/choose/

Audio Production Tips

Here are a few tips in terms of audio recording using tools like voice tools like Audacity or the voice tool within Canvas:

– Record voice authoring or podcasts in the morning or when your voice is not tired like at the end of a day of teaching

– Pretend your having a conversation with a student rather than formal reading like a textbook

– Do two to three practice runs. Your third or fourth try is likely to be the most concise and therefore the best.

– Make sure the microphone is close to your mouth. This will help in terms of the recording input level and reduce the chance of your recording extraneous noises in your office, etc.

– Focus on communicating two to three points max. Otherwise, students will have to scrub/rewind through the recording in order to review segments of the recording.

– If you’re describing something that’s worth illustrating in picture form, provide a separate link to the picture so students can view the picture while listening to your narrative.

– If you plan to use the audio recording over several semesters, you need to type a text transcript of the recording for hearing impaired students.

– Finally, remember what your mother always said and sit up straight so your diaphragm is extended.

  • Record voice authoring or podcasts in the morning or when your voice is not tired like at the end of a day of teaching
  • Pretend you're having a conversation with a student rather than formal reading like a textbook
  • Do two to three practice runs. Your third or fourth try is likely to be the most concise and therefore the best.
  • Make sure the microphone is close to your mouth. For a headset, figure a distance of about 3 inches and for a microphone, figure about 8-10 inches depending on the type of microphone. This will help in terms of the recording input level and reduce the chance of your recording extraneous noises in your office, etc.
  • Focus on communicating two to three points max. Otherwise, students will have to scrub/rewind through the recording in order to review segments of the recording.
  • If you’re describing something that’s worth illustrating in picture form, provide a separate link to the picture so students can view the picture while listening to your narrative.
  • If you plan to use the audio recording over several semesters, you need to type a text transcript of the recording for hearing impaired students.
  • Finally, remember what your mother always said and sit up straight so your diaphragm is extended before you record your narration.