Overview: The Utah Education Network has created a series of online video stories called UEN PDTV. Learn about the process for creating, developing and producing a web series like UEN PDTV to provide high-quality online professional development to educators.
Hi everyone! Welcome to ISTE! We are going to talk about using Online Video for Just in Time Teacher Learning. And all the way from Utah, this is Katie Garrett. Katie is the Digital Media Specialist for UEN. She has a Master’s from the University of Utah in Instructional Design and Educational Technology. Her speciality at UEN focusses on utilizing Open Educational Resources and ensuring digital accessibility or the resources we provide to Utah students and educators.
And this is Michael Hakkarinen. Although Michael now lives in Utah, he is originally from Maryland and super happy to back on the right side of the country. He is a former elementary school teacher turned instructional technology coach, turned Professional Development specialist and a former adjunct professor at Mount Saint Mary’s University! (Pause for cheers) He has been a trainer with UEN since 2014.
Michael: I’d like to share a quick summary introduction of what UEN does for Utah. As a state organization funded by the State of Utah and funding from the Corporation of Public Broadcasting, we provide internet connectivity to all public schools, colleges, and libraries in Utah. This means students at schools on Navajo reservations have the same connection, speed, and access as kids in the affluent suburbs of Salt Lake City. Along with providing the best internet connectivity to support online learning, we also want to provide the best online content for students to access.
And, to insure that Utah educators know how to utilize all of this amazing material, our team of 8 instructors travel all over the state delivering Professional Development. Along with the UEN resources we also support Canvas, the LMS adopted by the entire state public school system, Google Certification Programs, MakerSpace Workshops, Computer Science programs, and now this year we also have been awarded an ISTE CAP certification allowing us to hold the in-person and online ISTE Certification courses. All this traveling, however, can wear down both our state vehicle tires and the people driving. So whenever possible, we look for ways to leverage our state’s awesome internet network to deliver blended and online professional development.
Back in 2011, one of our first efforts to deliver PD online, the UEN PD Team created a weekly webinar series called “Faculty Lounge.” The goal was to get training on tech tools and web apps out to teachers in an easy to watch format that could be broadcast online right from our offices at the University of Utah. In 2011, it was ahead of its time. But by 2015, we had some issues. As you may already know, trying to watch a screencast for anything more than 3 minutes is mind numbing. For 30-45 minutes? Soul crushing. Also, not many teachers look forward to the end of the school day so they can run back to their classroom and watch a screencast. At our lowest point we would sometimes have only 3 or 4 live viewers. And that’s counting the two people running the Faculty Lounge.
As the Faculty Lounge episodes were saved, and posted online, we did find that they got more and more viewers over the weeks and months that followed. We were also able to add them to our online and flex courses to help blend instruction and provide remedial resources for teachers who might be new to a particular product. This gave us a new idea. Should we be making a library of material to be consumed asynchronously rather than struggle to produce a live episode every week? Were we working too hard to benefit just a few people at a specific time, when we could maybe do less work in a way that would benefit a lot more people over a long period of time?
Katie: So, in an effort to create “just in time” resources for teacher development and repurpose our digital media, UEN PDTV was born!
UEN FLASH VIDEO
Michael: Let me share with you the backstory or journey. How we got here. With the intent to make a webisode that modeled the same videography and editing skills any classroom teacher could use, we took the field with an iPhone for filming and an arsenal of iMovie editing skills. Although we made nice videos, that served their purpose, there was always a feeling that we could be doing it better.
In just the first year of this project our episodes and stories were starting to outgrow our technological resources and skills. During the filming of this one episode we did on Drones we asked drone operators, our very own UEN video crew, to also bring their DSLR’s to capture nice shots of the drone, and let us use their lavaliere microphones and sound recording devices. It definitely improved the quality of the footage and sound, but editing it all in iMovie was still a little difficult.
KATIE: When I saw what they were doing with PDTV – I wanted to be a part of it. At UEN, our professional department and media services are located in different buildings on campus. In the past these separate locations have made it difficult to collaborate. We didn’t have a lot of common projects to work on together. But this project was the perfect fit. Here’s a look at where we’re at today. This video clip highlights three of our favorite episodes. In this video you’ll see clips from: Success with Canvas, the Tech Garage and a Student-led Makerspace.
BEST OF UEN PDTV
KATIE – We’ve talked about the importance of collaboration and teamwork, but you also need the right tools to pull off a professional look.
We had a limited budget for our equipment but have been able to put together a production kit for about $5,000. I won’t get too tech-y here but we use Panasonic GH5 DSLR cameras, Rode mics and an H5 audio recorder. When working in schools we often have a limited window of time to accomplish what we need to do. This setup can come together in about 15 minutes.
Making accessible content can be a challenge when producing video. Luckily, we’ve partnered with a few providers that make captioning SUPER easy. This screenshot shows a video that was uploaded to Verbit for captioning. They offer really affordable captioning on a per-minute basis. These captions can be easily edited if needed. You can also export them for use in various platforms like Facebook and YouTube.
Have we convinced you to create your own version of something like PDTV? Here’s the “7 Simple Steps to Create PDTV Episode” We’ll walk you through the process and share a few of the tips and tricks we’ve learned along the way.
MICHAEL: Step 1: Where do the ideas come from? For the past two years we’ve been working with the Friday Institute from NC State. And through their LBDL program we got to partner with schools in south eastern Utah that we don’t always get much time to work with, some of these schools are on Navajo Land, around Monument Valley. This project led to an episode about technology use in rural schools, and that episode has been nominated for… an Emmy!
Another example – creating an episode to show what we cover in one of our PD Courses. Last year we introduced a course called “Mixed Reality for Education”. In this course we teach educators how to use Google Expeditions. One participant asked for help running a lesson with students. We did that, and brought the cameras along to get the footage for this episode, which is then shared in the course as well.
Conferences! Not only do we like to make a wrap-up reflection episode about the conferences we attend, but we also get tons of great ideas from the people we meet at the conferences. Once we have a good idea, we start building…
KATIE – … a production plan. Because we’re working with a number of individuals it helps to get all the details in one place and everyone on the same page — literally! On our production docs we include things like: equipment (how many cameras and mics are we bringing and which ones), who in on the production crew (what role they will play), basic logistics (where are we meeting, when), interview questions and contact information in case of an emergency. All of these small details planned in advance, will make the day go much smoother for everyone involved.
Some portions of our videos have a basic script. We record an intro and outro that setup and conclude the episode. This is usually out in front of a school or iconic location. Based on the content of the video we may structure a conversation or an interview.
MICHAEL – ONE PIECE OF ADVICE… not only should you write your interview questions ahead of time and share them with your interviewee, so they know what’s coming at them, but you should meet with them before filming to get on the same page with what story is being told. In this case, I should have met with Dr. David Strayer from the University of Utah’s Applied Cognition Lab ahead of time. He’s one of my idols, I was a bit star struck, and it shows in the video.
Other times a script isn’t needed at all. In a screencast episode working with one of my colleagues, Jared Fawson, we were showing some new features to one of our online resources. No script needed. Very organic conversation and it worked great.
KATIE: Editing is then done in Adobe Premier back at the UEN Offices. It usually takes about 2 two weeks in post production.
MICHAEL: We mentioned collaboration is key! We continue to collaborate throughout the whole process. As our editors work on putting the video together, we watch the videos and offer suggestions. This helps each editor better themselves as an editor. We rely on Google Drive to share video file revisions back and forth. The cloud really makes it easy for us to review work from anywhere at anytime.
Katie: here’s an example of feedback to each other. We put in notes with time codes so there is no confusion as to what part of the video we are making specific suggestions about.
Michael – And then the final step. When is it done? Basically, it’s done when we are out of time. We release these episodes every two weeks. In fact, there is an episode going live right now while we are presenting here in Philadelphia. We will give you the link to it here in a minute when we wrap up.
KATIE: When the video is all finished with editing and revisions, it goest to YouTube and then becomes there responsibility of Megan, our marketing coordinator. She manages all of the UEN Social media accounts.
Megan uses the online service “Buffer” to manage each channel. We selected Buffer because they offer a discount for non-profits. They also offer Instagram support which many similar services don’t provide. The drafts feature allows us to enter content and review as a group prior to posts going live. Premier features in Facebook and YouTube are also valuable when new features are released.
MICHAEL: This is an example of us repurposing a video for use beyond sharing on YouTube and Social Media. It becomes an instructional resource, a true learning object.
And that brings us full circle – remember the Faculty Lounge Webinars that got more and more views over time? Same thing happens with UEN PDTV. In the first week a video may only get a few hundred views. But as it’s put into courses those numbers just grow and grow over the following months or years if the content is relevant.
As we start to wrap up, let me summarize what UEN PDTV has taught us. We have been able to build relationships with LEAs, Organizations, and teachers across UTAH. As an organization, we’ve learned to leverage social media and data from social media to maximize our communication with educators. We’ve learned to use YouTube more effectively to create a library of resources for teachers to access when they need PD. We’ve learned how to repurpose video as learning objects and improve our online learning courses and programs. We’ve learned how to collaborate across departments.
KATIE – Our one piece of advice is simple you need to start somewhere. Anywhere. You don’t have to start big, or start fast, you just need to start.
If we had waited until we had a full production, budget and staff we would never be where we’re at today. Because Michael had an idea and just started, we were able to prove out the concept. With each episode we got new ideas, learned new ways to produce together, and have improved the practice.
Thank you for coming, for your time, and your attention. We hope you have a successful ISTE experience. Please check out our latest episode, and this entire presentation is also available right on our website at uen.org/pdtv