Pedagogy, Technologies

Echo360: New Features

As the new academic year gets under way, we will be looking at some new features available in Echo360 which are now available to staff. Echo360 is one of King’s College’s core technologies (read more about our core technologies) and is used for Lecture Capture platform which is used to record live lectures.  
Echo360 can also be used to create video content on your desktop using your webcam and microphone and can also record your screen. For full guidance on using the features described here, please refer to the links at the bottom of this post. 

Browser Capture 

Until recently, the only way to create a desktop recording using Echo360 was to download and install Universal Capture to your computer. Browser Capture allows staff to create a desktop recording without the need for additional software, using their browser. Browser Capture allows you to record your screen, webcam video and audio.  

Echo360 browser capture

 

What are the Pros and Cons of Browser Capture?

The main advantage of using Browser Capture is that it doesn’t require installing additional software. Other pros include the ability to record just one application or window on your computer, or a specific browser tab, none of which are on option via Universal Capture. However, unlike Universal Capture, you cannot create recordings if you are offline, so you will need an active internet connection whilst recording.

Advanced Editing

Echo360 have introduced advanced editing options, including:

  • The ability to remove segments from your recording
  • The ability to insert other media in your recording
  • The ability to remove or add tracks from your recording

Removing Segments of a Recording

This new feature allows users to remove a segment of a recording, including one from the middle of a recording. This is useful if you have a break during your lecture, or if students undertake group discussion, which is not useful to have as part of your recording. Once you are in the video editor, you will see a new option to Split Clip via the play head menu.

Removing Segments of a Recording

Using this on both ends of the segment that you want to remove will allow you to delete it.

Insert Other Media in a Recording

It may be useful to insert other media into your recording, for instance if you want to record an introductory video for your lecture and have it be part of the recording, or if there are challenging parts of your lecture content that you want to expand on after it’s taken place. In the Echo360 video editor, click on Insert Clip as shown, you will then be prompted to add the clip via your Echo360 library.

Insert Other Media in a Recording

Remove or Add Tracks

A track is a particular element of your recording, such as the audio, a camera feed showing the Lecturer, or the screen recording. The ability to remove a track may be useful if the camera feed was part of your recording, but you later decide that you want to remove that element. You can remove a track by accessing the editor, clicking on the 3 dots next to the track you want to remove and clicking on Remove Track.

Remove or Add Tracks

 

 

 

 

 

 

Similarly, you can add tracks to your recording that will play alongside the existing tracks. To do this, access the editor, click on the Actions dropdown menu and select Add A Track. You will then be prompted to add the track from your Echo360 Library.

Add a track menu option

 

 

 

 

 

Note: You can only have a total of 3 tracks in one recording, so if you already have 3 then you won’t be able to add a new track until one is deleted.

Customising Video Thumbnails

A thumbnail is the preview image of your recording. You may choose to change this to something that better summarises the content of your recording. For instance, you can select a frame from your recording that shows a slide that shows a summary of what will be covered, or you can create an image to upload as your new thumbnail.

You can grab a new thumbnail from your recording by navigating to the part of the recording showing the slide/video that you want to use and selecting Set Thumbnail on the play head menu and following the remainder of the on-screen prompts.

Customising Video Thumbnails

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For full guidance on using this feature, including how to upload a thumbnail from your computer, please refer to the link below under further guidance.

Further Guidance

Please note following links are accessible only for King’s staff:


Written by Fariha Choi

Fariha Choi is a Learning Technologist in the Centre for Technology Enhanced Learning and has been with CTEL since June 2021. She has a particular interest in educational multimedia and has worked as a Learning Technologist, eLearning Developer and Learning and Development Manager for the past 11 years.

Pedagogy, Technologies

Applying the Digital Education Accessibility Baseline: An Academic’s perspective

This recording by Dr. Manasi Nandi, Reader in Integrative Pharmacology, complements the blog post, Digital Education Accessibility Baseline: Raising our standards for digital accessibility. It focuses on how Manasi approached the implementation of the baseline, provides tips on where to start and how to overcome some of the challenges she encountered. The benefits of accessible KEATS courses and content are explained, and resources to support accessible design are signposted.

Please click on the image below to access the recording:

Applying the Digital Education Accessibility Baseline: An Academic’s perspective recording
Applying the Digital Education Accessibility Baseline: An Academic’s perspective – recording duration 13mins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Useful links:

HyFlex 3
Pedagogy

Part 2: Teaching in the HyFlex Classroom: Benefits and Challenges

This article has been divided in two parts. Part 1 explains what HyFlex is and which are the key points to consider before using it. Part 2 presents a wide range of teaching activities that can be used in a HyFlex classroom. Continue reading “Part 2: Teaching in the HyFlex Classroom: Benefits and Challenges”

HyFlex1
Pedagogy

Part 1: Teaching in the HyFlex Classroom: Benefits and Challenges

This article has been divided in two parts. Part 1 explains what HyFlex is and which are the key points to consider before using it. Part 2 presents a wide range of teaching activities that can be used in a HyFlex classroom.


Continue reading “Part 1: Teaching in the HyFlex Classroom: Benefits and Challenges”

Pedagogy

HyFlex physiology practicals during lockdown

The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for new flexible approaches to teaching and learning to ensure excellent student experience. One aspect of both undergraduate and postgraduate teaching in physiology, that has been most affected, is the delivery of practical classes and skills teaching. This experiential mode of teaching is invaluable in supporting the taught, theoretical component of Bioscience education.

HyFlex teaching environments allow a combination of in-person and remote delivery ensuring no student is disadvantaged in terms of learning experience if they are unable to attend taught classes in person. It also allows such teaching to be recorded for upload and later reviewed by students to support learning. There are limited HyFlex teaching high spaces available across the College which are currently restricted to classroom spaces. We believe that greater availability is required to facilitate practical and laboratory skills training.

Whilst we had already recorded high quality videos of all the practical classes for our MSc course, in preparation of online delivery we were aware that this mode of education works best with supplementing a hands-on experience. Therefore, we sought a way for the students to gain some experience in the essential laboratory skills needed for understanding of the key mechanisms underpinning our teaching as well as providing skills training in techniques they would require in later modules on the MSc and in their research project.

During semester 1 in the current academic year (October 2020), we successfully ran 8 HyFlex teaching sessions in our teaching laboratories in the Centre for Human Applied Physiology (Shepherds House, Guys Campus).

 

Figure 1 A) The Lab setup for a cardiovascular practical class showing camera, equipment, and screens. B) the class in action with a tutor demonstrating equipment and skills with live feed streaming over Teams.

We used commercially available low-cost portable equipment (owned by the authors) open-source software (Open Broadcast Software, OBS) to create a bespoke HyFlex teaching environment in one of our teaching labs following a full risk assessment.

As shown in Figure 2, i) two webcams (one for a wide-angle camera and one, mobile camera, for images of equipment and participants); ii) a radio microphone to ensure clear audio on both the recording and live stream and, iii) a PC laptop to run the software required for the experiment being undertaken and for video and audio mixing and broadcast were used.

 

Figure 2: Setup of equipment using standard office supplies, open-source software, and staff-owned equipment.

All the sessions were recorded and uploaded to KEATS for revision purposes.

This approach was used for our module 7BBLM004, Cardiovascular and Respiratory Physiology, which forms a core part of the MSc in Human and Applied Physiology.

Due to social distancing and limits on room capacity we repeated each practical on 4 occasions during each day of teaching, with several students joining for both their in-person session as well as the remote HyFlex session at a different time point in the day.

The students were incredibly supportive and grateful for the opportunity to receive some practical teaching, particularly as some were unable to join the in person practical classes. Feedback from the students confirmed that the classes were beneficial and that the participants felt safe while on campus and in the classes (Figure 3).

Figure 3 – Feedback from students following the HyFlex practical sessions.

 

We believe this approach offered enhanced participation to on-campus activities by those students who cannot attend in person for courses and modules which have a significant laboratory practical component.


Written by Dr James Clark & Dr Ged Rafferty

Dr James ClarkDr James Clark is a Reader in Human & Applied Physiology and Education Lead for the School of Cardiovascular Medicine andSciences. He currently runs the Human & Applied Physiology MSc. James supports a blended approach to education in HE and has been the recipient of a King’s award for innovative teaching (2017) as well as the Physiological Society Otto Hutter Prize for Excellence in Physiology Education (2019).

 

Dr Ged RaffertyDr Ged Rafferty is a Reader in Human & Translational Physiology in the Centre for Human and Applied Physiological Sciences He is currently the lead for 7BBLM004 Cardiovascular and Respiratory Physiology and will assume the lead for the MSc in Human & Applied Physiology in 2021-22.  Ged is an advocate for experiential learning and the benefits of practical teaching in human physiology.

 


 

HyFlex King's College
Pedagogy

ReFlexions on HyFlex

In 2020 we used HyFlex technology in our Research Skills in Pharmacology workshops to recreate the interactivity of class discussions. It allowed students in the classroom to interact with students thousands of miles away, but couldn’t fully recapture the dynamics of small group discussions with everyone in the same place. Continue reading “ReFlexions on HyFlex”

Student Media Assignments 1
Pedagogy

Using student media assignments

In her chapter in the recently published book ‘Languages at work, competent multilinguals and the pedagogical challenges of COVID-19’, Cecilia Goria describes the positive response of staff to the enforced move to teaching online due to the pandemic. This phase was described as Emergency Remote Teaching (ERT) – the quick unplanned response to the lockdown. Hodges et al. (2020) describe the speed with which this move to online instruction happened is unprecedented and staggering’.  Continue reading “Using student media assignments”

Online Video Meeting 1
Pedagogy

What can we do when students prefer to keep their cameras off during online teaching?

You might have probably noticed how students (even those who were known for being super-engaged in the classroom) tend to prefer keeping their webcam switched off during online teaching activities. This is likely to affect how we, as teachers, perceive and evaluate students’ engagement. Being able to see students’ faces and their behaviour while we teach, gives us a direct and constant feedback, and it is also likely to benefit online discussions. However, students might be reluctant to switch their cameras on, and there is no valid reason for forcing them to do so.   Continue reading “What can we do when students prefer to keep their cameras off during online teaching?”

Pedagogy, Technologies

Flipgrid: Enhancing Student Voice With a Bit of Fun!

Flipgrid, a social learning platform, caught my eye because it looked fun, modern, simple and similar to Snapchat. I have found that students will catch on quickly and are more likely to engage if the ‘tech’ we use for learning can subtly slot into the seamless and even subconscious way they already use technology in their everyday lives. In this post I’ll give you a quick introduction to what Flipgrid is, feedback from a couple of case studies on its uses in Teaching and Learning within King’s Foundations and its potential for further use. Continue reading “Flipgrid: Enhancing Student Voice With a Bit of Fun!”