During my entire time in high school, my class got to watch one video together—something to do with the Victorian era. Fast forward to 2012, and the scene has changed dramatically for high schoolers today. They don’t just consume more video in classroom settings, they produce them. And yes, the reason, like the article, “Video Use and Higher Education: Options for the Future” points out is that latest technologies have made it easier to make these videos.
Not too long ago, I was in a video class, and I remember the hassles I went through because I didn’t own a video recorder. Today, my cell phone and IPad can be used almost just as efficiently to create a video.
I am curious why the demand for video does not show the same levels of excitement in universities. Hmm, I am reminded of an incident that happened just last semester. In one of my blog posts, to support my point of view on the topic being discussed that week, I posted an online video of an author’s interview. My instructor was not satisfied till I included references from the author’s original paper in my post. Could it be that despite the rampant growth in video viewership, it is still not accepted as a credible source of information?
Findings from “The Audience for Online Video-Sharing Sites Shoots Up” do not surprise me. I think the day may not be too far away when our television sets become obsolete (gasp!). I know, but think about it. We, obviously seem to prefer multi-purpose devices (cell phones that also serves as a camera, tablets that are e-readers, and the list goes on), and the television has just one. So, we might just get rid of the “idiot box.” After all, how many times have you heard of something on the television go viral?
I have to add one thing here though—I love the convenience of watching television on my computer, but I definitely feel the eye strain more when I do so.
I had never heard of Blip before reading “Places to Go: Youtube.” And, so I watched a few clips with the intention to evaluate Blip as a learning tool. Here are a couple of things that stood out for me as I went through that exercise. The producers of the video don’t necessarily have the highest qualifications in the field. They just happen to know more than the average Joe about it. And, are willing to share that with the rest of the world. Also, the tone in most of these videos is very informal. Whether the subject was technical, such as this video: http://blip.tv/zedaxis/creating-layouts-with-css-6088111, or something on the lighter side of life like this one: http://blip.tv/japancast/japancast-hd-video-episode-076-6031288, they have an entertainment-y feel to them. Edutainment? How effective is the learning then? A point worth considering when we rely on this medium. That’s probably one of the reasons I loved reading “Teaching on Youtube,” and really glad that Alexandra Juhasz, not only went through the exercise, but shared her experiences with us afterward. It is good to know the factors to consider when coaxing your learners into a new source of learning. And, I couldn’t agree more with her on #5. While there’s nothing wrong in making learning fun and engaging, just because the culture around us is dumbing down, reducing our learning and teaching to match and/or imitate that is a dangerous path to take.
I also agree with Juhasz’s point that amateurs rule in an informal setting, such as youtube, and experts are reduced to an afterthought. Perhaps, Teachertube rectifies that issue to some extent?