What kind of videos are effective for learners?

Testimonial by Anne Villems, lecturer at University of Tartu, Estonia (in Estonian)


The easiest way is to let videorecord the live lecture in classroom and made it available to students via the Internet. This is helpful for those who were absent the lecture. We call this preserved lecture.

But, have you seen the videos of your lectures? I’ve tried to look and it was surprisingly annoying. There is paradox – the more you use active learning elements in your lecture, the harder work for learners to look it after as video. Of course, the minutes given to audience for thinking, for discussion with fellow learners and dialogue with the teacher may be cut out from video later because these do not give anything special to the viewer, rather delaying the transfer of the content.

The second approach is more effective. Choose the most important concepts, insights and subtopics of your subject. Especially the ones that you know they are difficult to be acquired for learners and are as stumbling blocks in the exam. Prepare and record the separate video clip about each of such a complex matter.

This summary video clis should not be long. A reasonable length is about 5-10 minutes, rarely 15 minutes. If it is necessary to illustrate the material (pictures, formulas etc), it’s possible to use a digital board. It can be used to identify the processes and transformations, to bring interesting examples. A large number of Khan Academy videos are made especially with the digital board.

These videos give learners the possibility to check their understanding and repeat the most important things in preparing for the exam.

When learners group is heterogeneous, it’s good to record videos required to cover essential prerequisite topics that may be forgotten or not previously studied by all learners. That kind of videos help learners to acquire better your subject.