We are excited to partner with you on building unique and engaging online educational experiences for students! This page is an overview of course media and the development process. We’ll start first with your key collaborator: the media program lead!
What is a media program lead?
Your strategic partner for course media is your program’s media program lead (MPL). MPLs have unique experience producing instructional media content for online courses. They’ll help conceptualize ideas and strategies, advise on best practices, provide training and resources, and design and create.
What is course media?
“Course media” and “media” are terms that have many meanings depending on the situation or context. We understand that everyone will come into course development with their unique viewpoint or understanding based on their prior experiences. With that said, it’s important that we come to a shared meaning so we can collaborate effectively.
For our purposes, we define course media as:
- A digital visual/audio learning resource
- Created by the developing faculty
- Collaboratively produced with an MPL specifically for a UW Extended Campus supported course
- A foundational course resource that won’t need to be updated before a scheduled revision of the course (courses are typically revised every 2-3 years)
- A presentation deck with audio narration and visuals that explores a particular topic
- A video introducing students to the course
- A screen recording demonstrating how to use software
Check out our collaborative course media showcase to see 100+ examples of course media that we’ve produced with faculty.
An OER is a learning resource that is made available to the public at no cost. Typically OERs are electronic, not copyrighted, and made available on the Web. A common example is a YouTube video.
“Just in Time” are videos or screen recordings that have been created and posted in a short time to address a time-sensitive or situational need. An example would be a video response posted in the course discussion board.
The media services team not provide active support on OERs or “Just in Time”. Faculty should consult their ID on OERs. For “Just in Time”, faculty can reference our self-help technical guide on Kaltura Capture or reach out to their campus IT desktop support.
What is the course media creation process?
Over the past 10+ years, we’ve collaboratively developed hundreds of online courses. Through those experiences, we’ve learned a lot. We’ve taken our accumulated knowledge and formulated a process that yields high-quality and effective media for student learning.
When you and your ID discussed the course development calendar and Attachment A at the beginning of your course development or revision, you outlined a schedule for media development as part of the process.
There are three major phases of course media development.
Phase I: Planning
Your initial instinct might be to start creating content right away. However, before authoring any course media, we first want to establish a clear vision and purpose for anything that we produce.
Early in development, you’ll work with ID on selecting primary learning resources (e.g., textbooks and journal articles) and filling out an alignment map. Early ideas for course media may arise during this time. Make note of these ideas and they’ll be discussed in your media consultation.
The media consultation is a meeting between faculty, ID, and the MPL where course media ideas are generated. The MPL and ID will help faculty cultivate these ideas by asking questions, making suggestions, advising on best practices, sharing examples, and even proposing new ideas or alternative approaches. This ideation process may wrap up in just one meeting or continue on past the consultation, ultimately leading to a completed media plan.
The media plan is a complete detail of all the course media being produced. It briefly outlines each media piece’s purpose, format, and location in the course. This information is typically recorded in the course alignment map.
Media Plan Best Practices
Review our page strategies for creating effective course media for best practices on when and why to create course media.
Phase II: Design and Development
For most course media pieces, there are three primary design and development stages. In order, they are faculty development, ID review, and media production.
A primary benefit of the collaborative course development model is the melding of everyone’s expertise. Faculty are experts in their subject matter, and the media services team has expertise in videography, graphic design, information design, animation, web design, and more. By virtue of this, faculty are able to focus mainly on the subject matter component of their course media and some very basic technical tasks. Explore the Case Studies section on this page to see examples of how we’ve collaborated with faculty.
First, faculty will author their course media. This could be, but not limited to, organizing and audio narrating a PowerPoint slide deck, writing a script for a video, or recording a screencast. Your MPL will ensure you can successfully tackle any of these tasks by providing 1:1 training, self-guided resources, and sometimes software or hardware.
Second, your ID will review your course media files. They may come back with questions or suggestions that may necessitate you to make updates. In some instances, they may proactively make pedagogical additions or adjustments to your course media. This might include, splitting a presentation slide out into multiple slides, reorganizing text content into a more graphical layout, or adding relevant imagery. These design choices are done in service of the student experience and focus on the layout and structure of your content and not the content itself.
Third and finally, your MPL will put your course media through our production process. This includes editing audio and video, graphic creation, animation design, and hosting media files.
Faculty Media Development Deadline
All faculty course media files are due by the end of the second to last month of development. This deadline ensures enough time to be ready for preview week.
Phase III: Completion and QA
After your course media has been through the media production process, it is reviewed by ID and embedded in the course. At this point, it is expected that faculty will review the produced course media and provide any crucial feedback before course launch.
During this phase, the produced course media is actively transcribed. All produced course media have a downloadable transcript and/or closed captions. At this point, course media development is complete!
New Development/Revision vs. Maintenance
MPLs are fully available as a resource to faculty and courses during course development, but not during maintenance. You can read more about what is and isn’t supported during maintenance on our maintenance policy page.
The instructor identified a concept that needed to be communicated with course media. Through discussion, we learned that their only experience communicating this topic to students was in a face-to-face setting. Standing at a whiteboard, they would draw out a diagram and lecture.
Design and Development
We had the faculty hand draw the completed diagram and include a picture of it in a PowerPoint slide. Then we had them record audio narration to that slide. Both of these elements would become references for us to create a timed animation to the narration. For the narration, we coached the faculty to walk students through the concept imagining the diagram moving and building knowing that we would create those elements later.
Completion and QA
The result was a dynamic and engaging animation that accomplished the same goals as it’s face-to-face counterpart.
The instructor pinpointed Kepler’s Law’s of Planetary Motion as an ideal topic for course media. It was covered in other learning resources, but something with stronger audio/visual components would be more beneficial for students.
Design and Development
We had the faculty put together a very simple PowerPoint slide deck with text content, a few images, and audio narration. This PowerPoint acted as our guide and content foundation for the produced media piece. We created formatted slides and animations to go along with the text narration, and formatted it into our Storybook+ player.
Completion and QA
The result is a powerful learning resource that utilizes audio narration, graphics, animation and interactive quizzes.
Published on October 20, 2022 at 9:55:02 am CDT. Last modified on October 28, 2022 at 9:55:33 am CDT.