Creating Videos

Recording and sharing video presentations or demonstrations can be an effective way to deliver content or assess student learning. UAA faculty, staff, and students have a variety of tools to choose from for recording, editing, captioning, and sharing videos.

Best practices

  • Multiple short videos are better than one long one. Try to stay under 10 minutes.
  • Record in a quiet space and use a microphone or headset, if possible. Do a test recording first, to make sure you can record and upload.
  • Your presentation doesn’t have to be perfect. Your students can benefit from seeing you as a real person!
  • Screencast videos record your computer screen with voice narration. You can use slide presentations, demonstrate Blackboard and other platforms, and create step-by-step walkthroughs.
  • Instead of uploading video files directly to Blackboard as attachments, use Kaltura Mashups (details below) or Build Content > Web Link (for YouTube videos).
  • Plan to edit the automatic captions or request professional captioning (extended through May 2021). For full accessibility, describe images and read/narrate text on the screen.

Watch our Recording and Sharing Video Content webinar (video, 22:29) to learn more.

Tools for Creating Videos

UAA provides several tools that faculty, staff and students can use to create and share videos. Kaltura (My Media) was adopted by UAA for this purpose. Kaltura is built into Blackboard Learn and provides the most streamlined and secure process. Use the Video Creation sheet on AI&e's Tools Comparison chart to decide which tool best fits your needs.

Because many faculty like Screencast-o-Matic’s simple interface and editing tools, AI&e provides instructor access to the Pro version. Both faculty and students can use the free version, which works well for videos up to 15 minutes. UAA's core productivity platforms include other tools that can help with creating and sharing videos: YouTube (Google) and PowerPoint (Office 365).

Please note that students can use Kaltura, YouTube, and the free version of Screencast-o-Matic just like faculty can.

  • Kaltura Media

    Kaltura Media

    Kaltura can be accessed in two ways. For most purposes, access Kaltura from inside Blackboard using My Media. On the Blackboard landing page (after you log in but before you enter a course), find the My Media module and click the My Media link. You can use Kaltura outside of Blackboard via UAA Kaltura MediaSpace to get a publicly sharable link. These two access points include different tools, so check which the instructions indicate.

    Recording a video using Kaltura

    You can create videos using Kaltura Personal Capture inside Blackboard My Media

    • In My Media, select Add New > Kaltura Personal Capture.
    • Open Kaltura Capture. If you have never downloaded Kaltura Personal Capture Desktop Recorder, you will be prompted to do so. When done, you may need to return to this screen and click again. If you have already downloaded it, a pop-up screen will appear. 
    • The Kaltura Personal Capture Space buttons appear.
      • Record icon. The big red button is to start recording.
      • Camera icon. Click to turn your webcam on and off for the presentation.
      • Screen icon. Select the type of screen capture you want. If you turn this option off, your screen will not be recorded. 
      • Audio icon. Select your microphone. If you turn this option off, your audio will not be recorded.
    • Click record, then begin presenting after the countdown. You can pause and resume, stop, and cancel recording, as well as annotate the screen via the pencil icon. Note the timer. When finished, click the stop icon. 
    • In the pop-up window, complete the entries for title, description, and tags. You have two save options. “Save” will save to the Kaltura Capture Space folder (not to your computer). “Save and upload” will save the video to the Kaltura Capture Space folder and then upload the video to your My Media. 

    Uploading videos into Kaltura Media

    For videos you have saved on your computer, upload video files to My Media via Blackboard. Follow the basic steps below or refer to the more detailed uploading videos into Kaltura Media document.
    • In My Media, select Add New button > Media Upload.
    • Select +Choose a file to upload. (All common video, audio and image formats in all resolutions are accepted.)
    • Navigate to where your video file is located, choose file and select OPEN.
    • Fill in the name and description, then give the file “tags” to assist in locating this later. Please tag your videos with UAA, your department/course prefix, and your name.
    • Select Save.

     

    For a video recorded on your phone, it is easier to use MediaSpace.

    • Using your phone’s browser, navigate to UAA Kaltura MediaSpace.
    • Select the guest icon in the top right and log in with your UA credentials.
    • Select + Media Upload.
    • Select +Choose a file to upload and navigate to where your videos are stored to select the video.
    • Fill in the name, description and tags and save.

     

    If you want to share a public YouTube video with your course, you can use Kaltura to add automatic captions. (You cannot request professional captions this way.) To add a YouTube video to Kaltura, you can use either My Media in Blackboard Learn or UAA Kaltura Mediaspace. This only works for public YouTube videos, not unlisted ones. 

    • Add New > YouTube.
    • Paste in the URL/link to the video and click Preview.
    • Fill in or edit the name, description, and tags and save.
    • When the video has processed, click the title and select the ACTIONS pull-down menu > Caption & Enrich > Submit.
    • Follow the editing instructions in the next section when those captions are ready.

     

    Using any of the methods above will add videos to your My Media in Blackboard. From there, you can use the edit and delete buttons on the right or click the title of the video for more actions. To edit a video in Kaltura, click the title of the video in My Media, then Actions > Edit. Then click the Launch Editor button. This video shows how to chop and splice.

    Adding and editing captions

    Your video will be machine-captioned automatically (check back in an hour; the wait depends on the length of your video). Edit captions when they have completed the automated process. Follow the basic steps below or refer to the more detailed adding and editing captions document.

    • Navigate to your My Media list.
    • Click the title of the video to open the details screen.
    • Select the ACTIONS pull-down menu.
    • Choose Caption & Enrich.
    • Kaltura will show the list of caption files. Choose EDIT (pen icon).
    • Kaltura will open the Edit tool where you can play the video and edit the captions.
    • Click Save, yes, back (play your video with CC English to see the edited version).

    Sharing videos in Blackboard

    To embed video from My Media to your Blackboard Course 

    • Navigate to your Blackboard course .
    • Open the content area where you want to post the video (videos can be added in any content area/folder and learning module).
    • Select Build Content, select Kaltura Media (under Mashups).
    • Your My Media Gallery will open.
    • Select the video you want by clicking </>Embed (if necessary, select “Media I Can Publish” under Filters).
    • Give the video a title and description and click Submit.

    Alternatively, create an Item in Blackboard, then use the Mashups button on the toolbar to find Kaltura and embed your video. See embedding Kaltura Videos in Blackboard for detailed instructions.

    Note: You can embed a video before the captions process. Updated captions will show everywhere your video is embedded.

  • Screencast-o-Matic

    Screencast-o-Matic

    This is a free tool for recording videos up to 15 minutes long that works great for students, staff, and faculty. You can record via your webcam, screencast, or a combination. For help, view Screencast-o-Matic tutorials.

    • Go to Screencast-o-Matic (there is no need to log in or create an account).
    • To start using the recorder, click Start recording for free. The first time, it will prompt you to download and run the program. After that, click the Launch Free Recorder button or open the program on your computer (usually the Downloads folder). Your browser may confirm that you want to open the screen recorder launcher.
    • Settings: Try to keep the recording window size to the defaults of 480p or 720p. Change the settings to include your screen, webcam, or both. Talk to be sure the narration area shows green. If not, adjust the narration/microphone setting.
    • When you’re ready, click Record. Begin presenting after the countdown. You can pause and resume, switch between webcam and screen focus, and annotate the screen via the pencil icon. Note the timer.
    • When finished, click pause and done. It will prompt you to Save and Upload. Choose Save as Video file. Edit the options and click publish. 
    • Upload video to Kaltura or YouTube for captioning and sharing.

     

    UAA faculty can access the Pro version of Screencast-o-Matic using these instructions to record longer videos and use the editing tools.

     

  • YouTube

    YouTube

    YouTube is an easy way to manage and share videos. UA faculty, staff, and students can log into YouTube using their UA username and password because it is part of our Google Suite of tools.  

    Uploading videos to YouTube

    • Log into YouTube using your UA username.
    • Click the “Create a video and more” button at the top (looks like a video camera with a plus).
    • Choose Upload video, then select your file or drag and drop it into the window.
    • Complete the title, details, and other items. Under visibility choose either Public or Unlisted and save.
    • Captions will be auto-generated within a few hours. Check back and then edit the captions.

     

    Sharing videos in Blackboard

    To share YouTube videos in Blackboard via link:

    • Copy the URL from YouTube. You can do this from the video details in YouTube Studio or, when viewing a video, click the share button under the video and copy the link.
    • Faculty can add it using any of the web link options in Blackboard (e.g., on the course menu or by using Build Content).
    • Faculty and students can add a link in the text editor box (more information below). To link to the YouTube video, type the video name, highlight that text, then click Insert/edit link on the toolbar (chain link icon). Paste the URL in the Link Path box, select Target: Open in New Window, then click Insert.

     

    To embed YouTube videos in Blackboard:

    • Copy the embed code from YouTube. When viewing a video, click the Share button under the video, click Embed, then copy the code.
    • Faculty and students can embed a YouTube video into Blackboard using the text editor. Make sure the text editor shows the expanded tool set; if not, click Show More (double downward arrow icon). Click the HTML button on the toolbar, paste the embed code, and click Update.

     

    The text editor is available in many Blackboard items (Item, Assignment, Discussion, Test, etc.). In a Blackboard assignment, students will need to click Write Submission to get the text editor.

  • Recording Slide Presentations

    Recording slide presentations

    Best practices

    • Avoid course/semester/section/date-specific info, so you can reuse easily.
    • Keep the slides simple with large text. Use high contrast (e.g., dark text on a white background). Minimize distracting visuals.
    • Consider writing a script to help you focus on educational content and eliminate redundancies.
    • Try to limit each slide to one main point. Lead with the main idea, so students can put the information into context.
    • Make images large and describe them as part of your narration. Remember that students may be viewing your videos on small phone screens.

     

    Microsoft Powerpoint

    PowerPoint can be used to create a screencast video with an optional webcam insert. The process varies depending on the version of PowerPoint. We recommend that Mac users not try this route without creating a short test video (PowerPoint 2016 does not support this feature for Macs).

    • Create your PowerPoint slides.
    • Add individual audio on the slides or Record Slide Show to add audio, slide transitions, and screen annotations. 
    • When you save the file, make sure you are saving as a PPTX. Older file formats may not preserve the audio.
    • File > Export > Create a video. Please follow Microsoft’s instructions for your version of PowerPoint: Turn your presentation into a video.
    • When your video is saved, upload the video file to YouTube or Kaltura for captioning and sharing in Blackboard.

     

    Google Slides

    Google Slides does not have a built-in recording feature. Both Google Slides and PowerPoint can be used with a screencast tool like Kaltura Personal Capture or Screencast-o-Matic to record presentations.