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Instant engagement – just add video???

Engaging StudentsIn conversation recently, I overheard someone saying that they were having a hard time retaining students. So they decided that they were going to put more videos in their course. (I’m adding a disclaimer here is that this was an overheard conversation, so I can’t make comment on any of the other engagement strategies they used).

My thoughts – eek!

Videos can be used to supplement and enhance written content to:

  • demonstrate a process
  • show how to do something
  • present scenarios
  • show different perspectives.

I got to thinking, if video is the next big thing in online content – what is its role in student engagement…

Does adding videos increase student engagement?

Can adding videos really enhance the level of student engagement? Intuitively we might say ‘yes’ it does. However, the descriptions above are all just different ways of presenting information. One piece of research found that use of video doesn’t improve learning effectiveness. However, the use of interactive video does.

If video is used to:

  • encourage students to watch and rehearse
  • provoke alternative thinking
  • support development of new skills.

Then it can enhance student engagement.

What are some other ways that we can use video? Lets learn from YouTube. We know that YouTube is immensely popular.

  • Over 800 million unique users visit YouTube each month
  • Over 4 billion hours of video are watched each month on YouTube
  • 72 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute
  • 70% of YouTube traffic comes from outside the US
  • YouTube is localized in 43 countries and across 60 languages
  • In 2011, YouTube had more than 1 trillion views or around 140 views for every person on Earth

YouTube engages on a number of levels:

  • People can watch videos (4 billion hours each month)
  • People can upload their own videos (over 1.5 million hrs each month)
  • People can comment on each other’s videos.

So try this instead…

So what if we incorporated video into the learning process in this way:

  • Student watches the video (transmission of content)
  • Student rehearses the skill
  • Student takes a video of them applying the skill
  • Other students comment on the video (peer assessment).

Now, this would be a very engaging use of video.

So when considering video as a way to engage your students, think about what you ‘wrap around it’ so it doesn’t become another form of content overload.

At Klevar we offer a range of services from working with you to implement your e-learning strategy, research services as well as design and development (including video development!). If you’d like to know more about what we do, email

This blog post has been adapted from some articles we wrote to support the QVDC workshops ‘Get Started in E-learning’


‘Tomorrow never comes…’ CC (by) AnYaDontStop

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