I’ve been trying for oh, the last TWO WEEKS to write a post about all the fun and glorious things I did at the OLA Superconference 2010, but I have some writer’s block or something.
So instead, I’ll discuss all the fun and glorious things I presented on, at the conference”s poster session.
Me and my buddy Angela Hamilton (Science Librarian at York), presented our lovely poster on the topic, “Why screencasting? The benefits of interactive online tutorials”. I say it’s lovely because Angela designed it and she made it look far, far prettier than anything I’d have been able to churn out. Bravo to her.
The poster focused on our combined work creating Adobe Captivate videos, with a lit-review we did of existing articles on the topic of screencasting video use in librarians. In fact, there is a lot of interesting coverage of this topic and it informed not only the contents of our poster, but the way I approach my own video-making.
We wanted it to be interactive, so we had a laptop set up with Captivate installed, to show attendees just how easy the whole thing is. It was fun to demonstrate in about one minute how you can capture your activities on screen, and turn it into a published video. We also had another laptop set up with our finished videos running on it — videos like “How to use CINAHL” or “How to cite properly”. That was cool too, because it shows off the bell’s and whistle’s of the software, and makes us look like competent, tech-savvy lie-berrians. Which we are, of course.
If you are going to be participating in a poster session: Bring lots and lots and lots of handouts. Why do people love the handouts so much? They were like, stealing them right off the table. We ran out. Lesson learned: More handouts. We had about 40 and that wasn’t enough.
Some common questions we got asked were:
- How much does this cost? Answer: It depends. The Adobe Captivate website has a section on their pricing for academic institutions. We generally encouraged people to download Jing or Wink first (both of which are free downloads), and get a taste for the tool, before taking the proprietary plunge.
- How does Captivate compare to other screencasting softwares? Answer: Uh… I dunno. Heh. I use Jing at the reference desk, to make quick-‘n-dirty vidoes to send to students via e-mail or chat reference, but I haven’t tried Captivate’s main competitor, Camtasia. Hopefully people were able to mosey over to our friend Alanna’s poster, where she talked about the Camtasia product. Maybe I’ll download a Camtasia trial to see how it compares.
- Is it hard to use? Answer: It depends on what you want, and how comfortable you are with jumping into new technologies. You can take five minutes to make a video, or you can take five months. It depends more on your own goals, and you’re willingness to sink time and effort into the finished product, than on the technology itself.
- What is the uptake like? Answer: Ah, good question. We’re trying to work out a good assessment scheme to figure out what students think of the videos, how much they use them, and how long they stay on each webpage. It’s tricky since regular Google Analytics code doesn’t work in .swf files — it’s a far more elaborate process to get the code to work on video files. So, we’ve cast evaluation and assessment of these videos as “future areas of research” (That was Angela’s idea — she’s crafty!).
- Can I get a list of your references? Answer: Yeah, sure. They’re right here :
Anderson, R. P. et al. (2008). Topics and features of academic medical library tutorials. Medical Reference Services Quarterly, 27(4), 406-418.
Anderson, R. P., & Wilson, S. P. (2009). Quantifying the effectiveness of interactive tutorials in medical library instruction. Medical Reference Services Quarterly, 28(1), 10-21.
Betty, P. (2008). Creation, management, and assessment of library screencasts: The regis libraries animated tutorials project. Journal of Library Administration, 48(3-4), 295-315.
Betty, P. (2009). Assessing homegrown library collections: Using google analytics to track use of screencasts and flash-based learning objects. Journal of Electronic Resources Librarianship, 21(1), 75-92.
Kimok, D., & Heller-Ross, H. (2008). Visual tutorials for point-of-need instruction in online courses. Journal of Library Administration, 48(3-4), 527-543.
Klapperstuck, K., & Lackie, R. (2009). Cool tools for content creation: More than blogs or wikis. MultiMedia & Internet@Schools, 16(2), 12.
Kroski, E. (2009). That’s infotainment!: How to create your own screencasts. School Library Journal, 55(2), 40-42.
Liu, S., Liao, H., & Pratt, J. A. (2009). Impact of media richness and flow on E-learning technology acceptance. Computers & Education, 52(3), 599-607.
Oud, J. (2009). Guidelines for effective online instruction using multimedia screencasts. Reference Services Review, 37(2), 164-177.
Tempelman-Kluit, N. (2006). Multimedia learning theories and online instruction. College & Research Libraries, 67(4), 364-369.