How to Effectively Use Video in ELearning
Instructional Designers always look for ways to make their courses fun and engaging. Adding video is the best way to involve learners in their learning process. Video is a great way to teach behavioral skills, demonstrate techniques, and provide excellent performance support. When creating instructional videos, it is important to look at them as if they were commercials. As we all know, the main goal of any commercial is to catch people’s attention quickly. However, it is equally important to keep one’s attention on the desired subject. Commercials usually reach that goal in less than 3 minutes by appealing to people’s emotions. Including short, thought-provoking chunks of information in your videos is much more memorable than creating long videos and covering all the material at once. In fact, it is best not to use video throughout the entire course as it may overwhelm your learners. Instead, include it at the beginning, in the middle, or at the end of the course. A short introductory video can serve as a good attention getter whereas a video in the middle can demonstrate how to do something or show a role-play. Alternatively, a video at the end can help you recap the points made throughout the course in an interesting, fun and engaging way. You can also consider using video clips to promote thinking. For example, after showing a short video related to the topic, instructional designers might ask questions based on the content of that video.
Even though there are many benefits to having video in your eLearning course, it may not always be feasible. Remember, video can be very expensive, so if your budget is limited, video may not be a practical solution. While it is true that video is a great way for visual learners to retain information, low quality video can be extremely distracting to the learner. Also, remember that scripting videos can take a lot of time. So, be sure to take all pros and cons into consideration before you decide to invest your time, money and resources into an eLearning video.
If you want more information about video in eLearning, or if you want to learn how to design instructionally sound eLearning courses, please check out the Instructional Design for eLearning: Essential guide to creating successful eLearning courses book. This book is also available in Spanish.