Friday, 3 April 2009

Video Recording

This afternoon I had a lecture video-ed (spellchecker suggests voided?!?!). This will be used by Student Recruitment for marketing purposes: they go out into schools and scare the pupils with it. The recording took place in a conference-type room, fairly small, and originally there was supposed to be an audience of about 8 school kids, but Recruitment couldn't get hold of any, so it was just me talking to an almost empty room (the person doing the recording was there as well).

My first attempt was no good. Not helped by my sore throat and the absence of any of the usual visual feedback (bored or perplexed students) made me go through my 49 slides at high-speed, ending the lecture after only 27 minutes. Not good.

Luckily there was enough time, so I had a break, drank some water, and then we did it again. This time I felt much more relaxed and at ease, explaining things in more detail, speaking more slowly, and at the end came in at 44 minutes. Much better!

The recording was done using the new Echo-360 system, and it is basically live. You can't pause or edit anything. Once you've started, you've got to finish. Unlike podcasting where you can edit out all those hesitations, repetitions, and deviations.

I got a list of tips from the media people, and I'll have to add another one: Have something to eat beforehand. At one stage I was getting very worried that my rumbling stomach would drown out my talking. I hope you won't be able to hear that on the recording...


  1. Well done - you're fearless! You paint a lovely picture - the loneliness of the long distance lecturer ;)

    At the Oxford conference on podcasting I attended yesterday, there were quite a few dismissive comments of the idea of recording a full-on lecture, almost all there seeming to favour breaking it down some ('coherent conceptual chunks' as one person had it - rather inelegantly, I thought!). I just don't know - it'll be interesting to see how it's received :-)

  2. I also find that a full lecture is probably too long. I acquired several lecture podcasts of topics which interest me, but I rarely have the time to spend a full uninterrupted hour on them. Now, a set of ten minute chunks would be a lot easier to digest.

    And I think that's also the approach I'll follow with my own podcasting over the next year...