There are a lot of options for creating your own course materials. You can create simple text forms and/or pdf. You can also make audio lessons. You may decide to make your own videos or you can look for Open Educational Resources (OER). This section focuses on how to the following topics:
- OER (Open Educational Resources)
- Creating Educational Videos
- Engaging Students With Videos
OER (Open Educational Resources)
Creating your own online materials and content can be time-consuming and you may not have the resources. Before designing your own content, search the web for free materials that can be used in your course -- look for Open Educational Resources (OER). OER are free online resources and can encompass full courses, course materials, modules, textbooks, streaming videos, tests, and software. The OER movement is currently growing because of the rising cost of educational materials (especially textbooks). There are many free course materials out there, and searching for OER can be overwhelming. It is better to search by category. Please take some time to explore the categories below and start looking for materials that you may find useful in your online course.
- Open Textbooks are typically free textbooks authored by faculty and published on the web with the support of universities.
- Open CourseWare is a digitized course material from private and public universities. Materials vary from complete syllabi and lecture slides to video lectures and assignments.
- Subject-specific OER are OER materials categorized by subject
- General OER Repositories contain general information about OER and some free materials
- Open Books: contain free books that can be downloaded and used for your courses
- Open Journals contain free academic journal articles
- Digital Media includes free videos and music.
Also, don't forget to search YouTube, TED, and Khan Academy for course content. Investigate your options for embedding or linking course materials when teaching online and whether your situation allows for copyright exceptions.
Creating Educational Videos
Many faculty produce their own videos for course introduction, to show how to use a piece of software, explain a difficult concept, tell a story, illustrate complex and abstract concepts or capture a presentation. Keep in mind that video production is time-consuming. Consider using the Video Express (KT G20). It is a self-service video recording studio that allows faculty and staff to Easily record high quality video in a pre-calibrated recording facility. If you are interested in using the room, please make a reservation at the Purdue Video Express Portal. If you need assistance, please contact [email protected] or 260-481-0724.
Here are some tips for making videos:
- Camera: you don't always need high-end cameras to shoot educational videos. Our cellphones have enough capabilities.
- Lights: you don't have to buy expensive lights. You could use natural light from your windows.
- Sound: record with less ambient noises (neighbor mowing their lawn, noises from your AC or heater, or your computer fan). If you have a little background noise, it is ok because once the video starts, people may not pay attention to it anymore. You can buy a lapel mic to increase your sound quality.
- Tripod: if you plan on making lots of videos, get a good cell phone or camera tripod.
- Scripts: script your videos or at least have an outline of the content.
- Attention resets: You can add interviews, B-rolls, text, graphics, screen captures, and photos to your videos.
- Screencasting: a screencast captures what happens on a monitor over a period of time. You can screencast using Zoom
Engaging Students with Videos
It is not because we posted a video that the students will watch it. To help increase the educational effectiveness of an online course video, consider applying one or more of the following active learning strategies. The goal here is to help ensure that students watch videos actively.
- Pose a question at the beginning of each video to give students guidance on what to watch for or consider before they watch the video.
- Embed short graded or formative self-assessments, either in the video itself or at the end of each video.
- After viewing the video, have students post the following to a discussion board:
- A concept new to them
- A concept that they found confusing (and why).
- A concept that, in the student’s opinion, relates either to the course text or to a previous class discussion (and how).
- Assign two or three videos and have students identify, compare, and contrast the concepts presented in each. How are concepts similar? How are they different? Which are substantiated or refuted by the course text (or other course materials)?