Monday 10 June 2013 10:14am
As part of a redesign by its owners Yahoo to keep up with competition from other sites such as Instagram, Flickr are offering the ability to post longer video clips than previously, as well as higher resolution photographs.
The redesign of the Flickr website includes a new layout for the photostream with a greater space and focus on images, as well as a new Activity Feed, showing users’ activity and recent uploads by friends.
Flickr is not only popular for individuals wishing to upload, store and share photos and video, but it is also a great place to find images and video for you to use in your own projects. We suggest you search for media using the advanced search options for finding only Creative Commons licensed media. This will let you explore millions of photos and video that you can use.
Our Image for Internet Image Searching tutorial will help to get you started with using third-party media and provides guidance on the legal use of materials.
The response from our Twitter followers (you can follow us at @jiscdigital) has been cautiously optimistic with concerns around usability. Once the dust has settled it will be interesting to see if the teething problems and changes make for an improved service.
Tuesday 09 April 2013 10:42am
Our latest case study (Using Newsfilm on JISC MediaHub) on the use of archive newsfilm in learning, teaching and research at the University of Manchester and Leeds Trinity University, published today, coincides with important announcements from EDINA and the British Universities Film and Video Council (BUFVC). Last week EDINA announced major improvements to its JISC MediaHub service and the BUFVC recently launched new citation guidelines for moving image and sound.
Our case study looks at how learners are developing their knowledge of history and online resources using newsfilm hosted by JISC MediaHub. We explore two modules that use this JISC eCollections service to examine the usefulness of news reports in the study of historical subjects. With access to more than 50,000 digital video newsfilm items, students consider impartiality and different styles of reporting through analysing and evaluating news media reports.
Currently over 200 HE/FE institutions subscribe to JISC MediaHub, allowing their staff and students to view and download more than 3,500 hours of digital image, video and audio items. As part of its ongoing improvements programme, the service has added new bookmarking, tagging and commenting features, enabling users to more easily collect and manage items of interest to them. Searching has also been improved with many new functions, including ‘explore by place’.
If your institution isn’t subscribed, you can’t view or download the video assets, but you can access newsfilm descriptions, shotlists and frame grabs - and watch example clips at: on the BUFVC ‘Newsfilm’ website. To find out how to subscribe, see JISC Collections’ Agreements website.
The BUFVC’s new AV Citation guidelines cover the whole range of moving image and sound objects including: film, TV and radio programmes, DVD extras, games, online clips, trailers, adverts, amateur footage, archival material, podcasts, and DVD study materials. They provide straightforward referencing rules that make it much easier for students and researchers to quote time-based content and aids the discovery, use and re-use of av materials - for example, archive newsfilm hosted by JISC MediaHub.
Thursday 28 March 2013 10:09am
The typical digital camera is highly automated and can enable novices to produce usable images with the minimum of effort. However, despite the excellent technology cameras often fail to give good, repeatable results.
Wednesday 13 March 2013 5:00pm
DG Connect hopes to make everybody in Europe digital.
We will achieve that by supporting ICT research & innovation and by deploying our regulatory and policy tools in order to boost growth and to create jobs. We will get there by setting an example as a lean and effective modern public actor. DG Connect is making a call for evidence and for your help. We ask all stakeholders & interested parties to respond to this questionnaire.
Wednesday 13 March 2013 4:57pm
Each webinar will last up to an hour and will discuss an aspect of the programme’s work. The webinars are free and open to all. Sign up.
Tuesday 12 March 2013 11:11am
SVG (Scalable Vector Graphic) has been around since 2001. It uses XML to display the image within a browser which gives it some interesting properties that we leverage. Effectively the browser renders SVG images "on the fly" (coordinates and instructions), enabling us to view the image in all modern browsers (Google chrome, Firefox, safari and Internet explorer 9+) including smartphones and tablet computers.
Because there is now wide enough support to use SVG, it is now mainstream and is being more widely used.
The benefits of SVG are:
The key features of SVG listed above should give you an idea of why SVG is pretty exciting. I recently worked on a project where I wanted to show a surgeon at an operating table and allow the student to press parts of the image to find out more about the scenario. I had to use a combination of PNG image graphics and jquery to provide the interactions - this is slow and limited to one size fits all. Using SVG I could reap the advantages of scalability to work on ANY device, animate parts of the image, reduce file size, make it easy to update and improve accessibility with the metadata features. Other uses of SVG that I have recently seen include drawing logos and graphics such as social media icons.
For people wanting to produce interactive resources I think SVG has the potential to become part of your toolkit.
Css-tricks have produced a step-by-step introductory guide ‘Using SVG’ that will walk you through creating your very own interactive SVG image.
You can have a play with an online SVG editor hosed on Google code called svg-edit.
If you create an SVG project please share with us either in the comments or email firstname.lastname@example.org as i’d love to see your projects in action.
Wednesday 20 February 2013 4:14pm
The plan is the result of over a decade of work by both the Library and National Recording Preservation board, comprising of 32 recommendations, both short and long term. The recommendations within the plan include a national discography, university based degree programs in audio archiving and an audio-preservation resource directory.
James H.Billington from the Library of Congress believes that, “As a nation, we have good reason to be proud of our record of creativity in the sound-recording arts and sciences. However, our collective energy in creating and consuming sound recordings has not been matched by an equal level of interest in preserving them for posterity. Radio broadcasts, music, interviews, historic speeches, field recordings, comedy records, author readings and other recordings have already been forever lost to the American people”.
Although the Internet is rapidly developing, U.S copyright laws have meant that historical recordings are scarcely available online, so both researchers and the general public are limited as to where they can find sound recordings. "Collecting, preserving and providing access to recorded sound requires a comprehensive national strategy. This plan is the result of a long and challenging effort, taking into account the concerns and interests of many public and private stakeholders. It is America’s first significant step toward effective national collaboration to save our recorded-sound heritage for future generations”.
Read more about the National Recording Preservation Plan.
Thursday 07 February 2013 1:51pm
As a new intern at JISC Digital Media with a fair but limited amount of knowledge and experience of filmmaking, an opportunity recently arose to gain more of both. So last Thursday, after frantically attempting to dig my car out of what looked like the result of a small avalanche after the recent snowfall, I accompanied JISC Digital Media video advisor Steve to a local house where filming was to take place. The filming in question, was of actors performing a series of good and bad interview scenarios and techniques for medical students at the University of Bristol.
Upon arrival I nervously navigated the car down a rather steep, snow covered driveway with Steve’s assistance and once inside, I helped to set up the lighting, camera and tripods. It was interesting to learn about lighting when filming indoors and to see how much small details such as a glass picture frame can affect the quality of the recording. My experiences of filming had involved slightly smaller, more basic versions of the equipment used at JISC Digital Media so it was interesting to see a more professional setup. I was also keen to see how filming for this purpose works, as the majority of my experience in filmmaking was using the style of broadcast news when studying for my Journalism degree.
A group of three women arrived and two began practising lines, one who was not actually an actress but a lecturer playing the interviewer and the other a trained actress, playing a parent who had recently taken her child to be vaccinated against the MMR virus. The other woman I assumed to be from the university faculty and was mostly directing and involved in discussions about filming. The interview techniques to be filmed primarily involved how the interviewer should behave, the depth of questions being asked and how they should respond to an irritable interviewee who may then react negatively to a particular question.
As filming got underway, the two feline residents of the house had decided that now was the time for their close up, quite literally in one case. After one cat had decided to jump through the scene into the window behind the sofa, in the next take the other had decided to cause even more of a stir and place itself directly in between the two actresses, proceeding to then turn around and present its rear end to the camera. Naturally filming then came to a temporary halt as it became quite difficult to film an interview about child vaccinations at this time, due to the new star of the show.
After managing to compose ourselves, filming continued although admittedly I was still chuckling quietly to myself. My role had been mainly assisting Steve with setting up and moving equipment for different angles when filming noddies (a camera shot technique involving someone purposely nodding, which is often used to convey emotion) and any other required shots. Filming then moved on to the bad interviewing techniques after a tea break. These scenarios took less time to film as the point was for the interviewer to remain rather strict and not allow the interviewee’s responses to overrun.
Filming finished at around half past one and after packing up the equipment, it was then time to attempt to get the car out of the driveway. The experience as a whole was interesting and also productive as it provided me with practical, hands-on experience with professional filming equipment and a real scenario solving a real problem/client need. It was also certainly worthwhile to get an insight into a different type of filming which seems to be potentially very beneficial for students and staff. It provides a real life visual guide for both what to do and what not to do, demonstrating typical body language and different reactions to questions that the student might not necessarily foresee. However unfortunately for the cats, I don’t think that their somewhat avant garde performances will make the final cut.
Wednesday 30 January 2013 2:17pm
JISC and Ithaki S+R release new report "Sustaining Our Digital Future: Institutional Strategies for Digital Content".
Today Jisc and Ithaka S+R are launching “Sustaining Our Digital Future: Institutional Strategies for Digital Content”, a new report aimed at helping digital projects to thrive.
This report, which provides a close look at three institutions (UCL, Imperial War Museums and the National Library of Wales) in the United Kingdom confirms:
“It’s a wakeup call for us all,” said Andrew Green, chief executive and librarian at the National Library of Wales. “It’s essential reading for anyone in the business of access to digital content.”
The report, complete with effective recommendations includes a Sustainability Health Check Tool for Digital Content Projects, which helps people to ascertain what tools or resources projects could use to be even more successful.
With funding from the Jisc- led Strategic Content Alliance(SCA) in the United Kingdom, the Canadian Heritage Information Network, and the National Endowment for the Humanitiesin the United States, Ithaka S+R is conducting a multi-year research program to shed light on common challenges associated with sustaining digital projects beyond implementation and provide guidance and tools to help administrators, project leaders, librarians, and funders ensure that projects continue to grow. This report is the first in the series.
If you interested in watching interviews covering how universities, museums and libraries are developing capacity and capacity to sustain digital content you may also find these links useful:
Video interviews on the organisational perspectives from senior executives at UCL, IWM and NLW:
Find out more about the SCA
Tuesday 29 January 2013 4:39pm
Today we'd like to share with you our new guide: 'Top Tips for Video Editing'.
Once you have shot your video you may need to remove content that you don't need and re-arrange the video into an effective narrative. This short guide provides 10 top tips on editing your digital video.
We hope you enjoy this guide. If you have any helpful tips on editing for us to add please get in touch.
Friday 18 January 2013 12:00pm
Please note that we will be closed on Friday 18th January from noon due to the poor weather conditions.
Friday 11 January 2013 9:28am
Today sees the creation of the MediaMosa Foundation, an organisation to oversee the continued development and promotion of MediaMosa.
Fans of open source software (which includes us here at JISC Digital Media) will be happy to learn that MediaMosa, the free media management and distribution platform created by the the good people at SURFnet and Kennisnet, now has a foundation to ensure its continued development and propagation.
The new MediaMosa Foundation consists of a board and a user's council, promoting stability in the system's long-term development while at the same time representing the interests of the user community. Its remit includes the further development of the software as well as promoting its use.
MediaMosa is built on top of Drupal, the popular open source CMS. It supports the uploading, playing and searching of video and audio content, providing not only a simple way to use video and audio in a website but also supporting easy integration of the material into lectures and lessons.
For details about MediaMosa.
For the MediaMosa Foundation's press release.
Wednesday 12 December 2012 3:35pm
This week saw the long awaited two-day conference '3D Scanning: Artefacts from the past, for the future', organised by Dr Phillip Lindley and hosted by Cambridge University.
The event was co-funded by Representing Reformation and Jisc. The conference marked the start of JISC Digital Media’s official support for 3D content (as an extension of our support for audio, images and video).
Peter Findlay (Programme Manager, Digitisation - Jisc Innovations) and Stephen Gray (Advisor – JISC Digital Media) attended the Cambridge event and both highlighted Jisc’s interest in the potential of 3D content within research and educational.
A JISC Digital Media 3D toolkit will be published early next year and is intended to encourage 3D digitisation to be viewed as achievable, affordable and not necessarily all that complex (especially if you’re familiar with other types of digitisation). The toolkit will look at possible technical solutions, both to 3D capture and sharing 3D models. While an extension to the toolkit (produced in partnership with JISC Legal) will examine permissions and IPR issues.
The Cambridge event was a great success and the range of projects using 3D imaging was breathtaking. More information is available from Representing Reformation.
Monday 10 December 2012 10:11am
JISC Advance are hosting a free online webinar session on Wednesday 19th December about using augmented reality to develop new materials.
Presented by Carole Drury, College Director and Dan Hodge, Lecturer in Digital Media, from Kendal College. This webinar will be of particular interest to practitioners and Teaching and Learning Curriculum Managers though others will find it useful.
Wednesday 19 December 14.00-14.30
With a shortage of good quality learning materials available for plumbing students, Kendal College has developed new materials using Augmented Reality (AR) technology. Find out more about how they did it, the difference it has made to their plumbing students and how the College is developing these materials for other subjects. This project has been funded by the JISC Advance Further Education and Skills (FES) Development and Resources Programme.
To book your free place email email@example.com
Discover more about this project here.
The FES programme is funding 32 projects operating in a large variety of professional contexts, across Offender Learning, Work Based Learning, Community Learning, Further Education, Specialist Provision and more. The projects focus on a wide range of different technologies and their applications, including Mobile Learning, Audio feedback, the use of Student Owned Devices, Remote (and automated) assessment and many others.
Thursday 06 December 2012 5:10pm
Today we'd like to share with you a new guide from us 'Using audio in teaching and learning'.
This guide brings together examples of real-world uses of audio across the sector and points you to further information for making your own materials.
We hope you enjoy this guide and if you have any helpful examples for us to add then please get in touch.
Tuesday 27 November 2012 9:00am
A collection of Techsmith resources to help you make high quality screencasts using Camtasia 8.
I have recently been getting back into the groove with using Camtasia for some upcoming projects and realised that there is now a nice pool of support materials from Techsmith to help you get things done.
As with most software, you get used to your own way of doing things, but this may not always be the quickest or most effective way. So I found some of the below to be an asset.
The following are links to resources that I think will be particularly helpful to those of you who use Camtasia. I will endeavour to add to this blog post as I find new resources. If you have any useful resources please do contact me and i'll update this post with credit.
Our one day workshop Building Effective Screencasts uses Camtasia throughout the day.
Monday 19 November 2012 11:27am
About 40 people attended our online surgery yesterday to find out more about the use of popular online digital media tools in teaching and learning, how we can evaluate them to ensure they actually deliver the educational goods, and to discover how a popular online social networking platform is used at an FE College.
Our first speaker, independent educational advisor Theo Kuechel, provided an overview of the popular online tools currently available and how they fit within a learning ‘ecosystem’. His mind map (see link below) helped to untangle the often confusing web of platforms, content and affordances, and he provided some pertinent examples of the current use of platforms to support learning.
I spoke about a workflow I’m developing that encourages consideration of the technical, pedagogical and learning design issues involved in evaluating the potential of online tools. The process involves asking two main questions: "Will it work?” – on a technical level as well as in support of teaching and learning - and “How we can use the tools and their outputs within a learning context?”. The key technical considerations involve a pragmatic review (e.g. reviewing accessibility, reliability, legal issues etc.) plus a usability review. Consideration of teaching and learning issues involves reviewing the tool in question against Chickering and Gamson’s 7 principles for Effective Undergraduate Education. To aid reflection on learning design issues I presented a simplified version of the Dial-e Framework – a pedagogic framework devised to aid consideration of the use of digital content - and linked this with Bloom’s Taxonomy of the Cognitive Domain. My simplified Dial-e uses 4 key learning designs (as opposed to 10 in the full version) – Stimulus, Investigation, Analysis and Creation.
After this rather theoretical approach, Adam Richards and Deri Roberts shared their experiences of using Facebook to support learning on their Music Technology modules at Bridgend College, Wales. They needed a tool that was embedded in their students’ experience, allowed for direct interaction with and between students, but which respected student and staff privacy and did not require institutional IT support. In this section (which was based on Adam and Deri’s presentation at Alt-C earlier this year) they described how using the ‘closed group’ function within Facebook facilitated a rich, interactive and responsive learning environment.
During the Q+A session a number of issues were raised regarding the changeability of some platforms and managing privacy online. While acknowledging the importance of understanding the terms and conditions entered into when signing up to a third party service (see the link to JISC Legal’s advice on Facebook below), the speakers pointed to the importance to personal and professional development of engaging with tools, and issues related to their use, in an educational setting. Third party online digital media tools are a vital part of our social and professional ‘ecology’ and their use in support of teaching and learning is a subject we shall return to in future.
Online surgery participant Teresa Mackinnon ( Language Centre, University of Warwick) shared her case study: http://www.scribd.com/doc/98582382/Teresa-MacKinnon-Breaking-Out-of-the-Walled-Garden
Thursday 01 November 2012 9:00am
TechSmith, the makers of Camtasia screencasting software have produced a tutorial that guides you through the recording of your skype calls and other online sessions.
In 'How to Record Skype, Google Hangouts, and Webinars' the tutorial covers scenarios for how to record a Skype call. This is something that we get asked about from time to time, and is particularly useful for recording interviews, meetings and student feedback.
My tip is to make sure you inform everybody that the session is being recorded and that they are happy about it.
If you think this sounds useful come to our screencast workshop in February 2013.
Tuesday 25 September 2012 3:50pm
Janet, the UK’s research and education network, showcased a group of exciting platforms and education that are set to revolutionise distance learning in the Arts and Humanities.
At a recent workshop held at the Royal College of Music, Janet demonstrated technologies that enable high quality, synchronous, live music coaching, rehearsal and performance that also has potential for teaching in Drama and Medicine.
Music teaching demands the ability to hear and assess sound with a high degree of accuracy. Problems with system delays (latency), echo, and poor quality sound caused by the need to encode and decode video and audio, network instability, and the incorrect physical placement of microphones and speakers prevent musicians from playing together online. But a set of new technologies combined with Janet's dedicated high speed network are now providing new, high quality, methods for delivering teaching and learning which enable improved communication, new opportunities for cooperation between learners, and the maintainance of high expectations for learners, both off and on campus.
The workshop included demonstrations of open source and free (for education) technologies:
The workshop was recorded and presentations will soon be available to view online.
The team at Janet are keen to hear about projects in education that have the potential to exploit their high-speed network. To be kept up to date with the latest projects, ideas and news following the event, you can join the Arts and Humanities community group at https://community.ja.net/groups/arts-and-humanities.
Thursday 20 September 2012 3:28pm
Today we are pleased to announce a new guide for people interested in finding out how digital media can be used in teaching and learning.
We explore what digital media is, where it can be used to support teaching and learning and what the key opportunities and challenges are.
Tuesday 18 September 2012 2:09pm
Earlier this month the Recording and Augmenting Lectures for Learning project (REC:all), held a well-attended webinar which set out their draft pedagogical framework for lecture capture.
Although the technology that allows us to make video recordings of lectures available to our students online has been around for many years, it shows no sign of losing its 'hot topic' status - thanks largely to continuing improvements in tools, and debates surrounding opportunities to 'flip the classroom'1. Extracting the most value from technologies to support teaching and learning is an important concern for educational practitioners faced with a diverse and growing array of tools, platforms and technologies and a vital part of the debate is centred on developing frameworks and guidance which provide clear and unambiguous pathways to good practice - something very close to our heart at JISC Digital Media.
A key player in this debate, the Recording and Augmenting Lectures for Learning project (REC:all), held a well-attended webinar 2 earlier this month which set out their draft pedagogical framework for lecture capture (or 'weblectures'). Along with exploring the technological and legal aspects of weblectures, REC:all aims to develop tried and tested guidance for best practice in teaching and learning. They aim to challenge the notion of lecture capture as a passive technology, and encourage the integration of video technology to support learning on and off campus. The purpose is to develop shared designs and a shared vocabulary that will enable educators to enhance and share their practice more effectively.
The discussion kicked off with an outline of the thinking behind the current iteration of REC:all's draft pedagogical framework. This is based on a revised version of Blooms Taxonomy for the Cognitive Domain 3 which models the way students learn as an ever more sophisticated progression through six stages of learning. When applied to weblectures REC:all reduce these six to three main areas:
Remember and understand – knowledge transfer supported by basic uploads of, for example, recorded lectures to a VLE.
Apply and analyse - short knowledge clips (e.g. re-edited lectures, video clips, and screencasts) that use interactivity (e.g. tasks, quizzes or polls) that encourage learners to engage with their knowledge.
Evaluate and create - complex interactions (e.g. webinars, online tutorials and learner generated content) that require learners to take part in higher level activities.
While Bloom is a well-known, and used, educational model and can act as a good starting point for developing a shared vocabulary it does have some weaknesses. Learning does not progress in a linear fashion, and as webinar speaker and REC:all project leader, Clive Young (UCL) acknowledged, recent research 4 is showing that even the most simple online presentations of full lectures are being used by learners in sophisticated, interactive and creative ways. In addition, while helpful in explaining the learning process and very useful in assessing work, it does not show us how to achieve learning objectives, or how to use technology to achieve these effectively.
To answer the 'how' questions, the framework calls on the ‘Cone of Learning’ 5 (emphasising the value of active learning), the ‘Three I’s’ Framework 6 (emphasising the importance of interaction and the potential for learner input), and the outcomes of the Dutch/Belgium OASE ('weblectures for better learning') Project7 which emphasises the importance of embedding lecture capture into learning design and employing associated tools to augment the learner experience.
To illustrate how weblecture tools are being used effectively, recent examples were provided which demonstrated how good use of technology can have a remarkable impact on results. One, taken from an OASE-supported project, presented a learning plan that used simple lecture capture and screencast technology to achieve a 50% improvement in results for a course in statistics, and the I-Star Learning Project 8 at Tilburg University showed how the effective use of knowledge clips, webinars, online tests and live streaming helped to achieve a 30% improvement in results on an accountancy course for 1500 students.
The webinar concluded with a question and answer session that touched on opportunities for reflection, learners' views on flipped classroom and criteria for assessing technologies for learning.
The REC:all project is currently running a pilot of its draft framework and will disseminate outcomes later this year. They are very keen to receive feedback on what is working and what isn't working for teachers who integrate lecture capture and other video technologies into their learning environment.
. JISC CETIS, 2011. Can the flipped classroom disrupt the existing lecture-based teaching model in institutions? JISC CETIS Blog. [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
. REC:all, 2012. The Pedagogy Framework. REC:all Webinar. [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
. Wikipedia, 2012. Blooms Taxonomy. [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
. Pierre Gorissen, 2011. Analysing the use of recorded lectures by students. ALT-C 2011 Presentation. [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
. Tangient LLC , 2012. WikiClassroomTUD: Cone of Learning. [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
. Young, C and Asensio, M (2002) Looking through Three .I.s: the Pedagogic Use of streaming Video. In Banks, S, Goodyear, P, Hodgson, V and McConnell, D (eds), Networked Learning 2002, Sheffield, March. Conference Proceedings pp. 628-635 [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
. The SURF Foundation, 2012. The OASIS Project. (Dutch) [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
. i-Star Learning, 2012. What is i-star Learning? (Dutch) [Accessed: 18 September 2012]
Tuesday 18 September 2012 10:22am
Today we are pleased to announce the successful bids that are to receive funding for new learning resources, methods and expanding opportunities in post-16 learning across the UK.
The 32 bids represent all countries of the UK and all aspects of the FE and Skills sector including work-based learning, adult and community learning, colleges and specialist providers. They also involve 90 partners and numerous local links.
Read the full press release Successful bids from JISC Advance funding programme to enhance learning and teaching.
Monday 17 September 2012 8:00am
The Certificate in Digital Imaging, a customised qualification run by JISC Digital Media to support the accredited development of digitisation staff who previously had little provision in the way of formal accreditation of their skills, has had a great first year.
It has been well received in the community and has seen 28 delegates in 5 cohorts successfully complete the 3 day fast track course. All 28 delegates, after successfully passing their assessments have gone on to be awarded the BTEC Certificate.
Delegates have come from across the entire digitisation community and include representatives from The British Library, National Archives, National Library of Ireland, National Library of Scotland, Tate Gallery, The National Gallery, and Keele University. as well as a whole host of others.
On completing the post course survey, delegates agreed 100% that the course was value for money and that they would recommend JISC Digital Media's Training to others. As one of our delegates put it:
"All the information was useful and it definitely expanded my knowledge - even in the areas I already had some experience… This course has contributed a great deal towards my personal development and is relevant to my institutions strategic objectives"
The fast track 3 day course, which is only run by JISC Digital Media is divided into three, one day self contained sessions covering digital capture, image optimisation and manipulation and image management (metadata and copyright). The sessions are supported with workbooks and pre-course reading to ensure that delegates are well supported for the assessment process.
The Courses run in JISC Digital Media's Bristol office, cost £900 (including registration, assessment and certification) and in 2013 are running on the following dates:
To express your interest in, or for further information, regarding the course please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our BTEC section.
Thursday 06 September 2012 2:32pm
There seems to be growing interest in providing dedicated "creative media" computer suites.
The continued popularity of digital media in education has affected both staff and students. Traditionally digital media use and consumption was curated by the teacher who purchased third party materials. Today there is a high volume of usage AND creation by both staff and students.
In addition to finding and purchasing other peoples materials, now it is common for teaching staff to create and publish their own custom teaching activities for student usage that make use of digital media. For example popular teacher uses include recording talking heads (the teachers head talking to the viewer on-screen), screencasts (recording on-screen activity), and session recordings (e.g. lecture capture) for a wide variety of uses in face to face and online spaces. In addition to students consuming teacher materials, they too are finding uses such as photo documentation during a course project lifecycle, recording group presentations, and submitting digital media course work.
In order to meet these demands, we have started to notice a rise in the number of departments providing "creative media suites" outside of traditional creative departments. These departments typically offer bookable recording equipment for both use in the suite and to take away, specialist editing software and on-site support. Our service helpdesk is regularly asked to provide suggestions for kit that staff should purchase.
For example at The University of Sheffield Dr Christine Sexton recently wrote about their implementation of a media suite which aims to provide effective support for both staff and student. I have written before that one of the key factors for the strong interest in using digital media is its "flexibility". We can make images, video and audio work for communication, teaching, learning, assessment and delivery. Where the context of use is appropriate many now think "why not?".
Creating your own digital media has never been more accessible to start experimenting with, particularly with the growth of staff and students bringing and using their own devices (BYOD). This curiosity with peoples own devices has in part led to expectations that institutions should be able to give us the tools we need to take it to the next level.
It is encouraging to see that many institutions take the creation and use of digital media seriously enough to provide centrally supported suites.
As far as I am aware there haven't been any survey results from the sector documenting demand and usage figures for these type of suites, but this would be fascinating to read.
Do you have a supported media suite? Is it well used and what is it being used for? What kit have you provided? Let us know in the comments!
Wednesday 05 September 2012 9:39am
JISC MediaHub has released a new feature that enables you to explore their large media collection by location.
It is a common requirement to want to find relevant media based on a location. Features like the new "explore by location" allow you to discover results that you may have never found using keywords alone.
The "explore by location" is a welcome addition to the collection of search features already available at JISC MediaHub.
Wednesday 01 August 2012 8:00am
Hello and Happy New Year! Today is the first day of the new academic year, and JISC Digital Media is ringing in some changes: both to our website and to service remit that will shape our future offering.
Today’s blog posting will focus on the first change: we have re-skinned the JISC Digital Media website to refresh our look and to facilitate a change in the way we have organised our advice. As you can see though, the changes are still in keeping with the service’s ethos: easy to use, information rich, yet modern and bright (we know you love the citrus brights)!
So, just in case you can’t remember, here is a picture of the old home page:
And at the top is a picture of the new homepage.
Though to be fair this picture doesn’t do the new homepage justice! That’s because we’re using a carousel in order to highlight new activity and different features which we think you will find useful.
So please take some time to explore the new look and the way we’ve re-organised our extensive advice documents! The re-organisation has been based on a lifecycle approach (which you can see on the homepage) which hopefully makes it easier for you to find the guidance that you need.
Of course, we’re always interested in feedback, so please do let us know if you have any!
Friday 13 July 2012 8:59am
JISC Digital Media once again had a significant presence at the DIVERSE conference 2012.
DIVERSE focuses on the use of video in education. This year's event was held in Leuven, Belgium.
'Sharing Online Video for Education', 4 July, 2012. With permission of KU Leuven - Dienst Media en Leren.
Tim O'Riordan presented a paper about EdMediaShare, JISC Digital Media's curated site for educational video which has been organised with a pedagogical framework. The talk generated a very positive response and it is hoped that many more contributions to the site will be forthcoming as a result.
Along with Ingrid Bruynse of the University of KwaZulu Natal and Vance Martin of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, I presented a progress report on the Teacher Conservation Project, an attempt to address the serious shortage of teachers in South Africa through the provision of educational video which can be downloaded onto mobile phones in rural locations. The response of the attendees was extremely enthusiastic and afterwards Peter Van Pareerren, chair of DIVERSE, proposed that the project be adopted by DIVERSE to ensure continued support and increase the provision of materials.
Over the three days of the conference there were five keynotes, covering topics as, er, diverse as a 35-part television series recreating the voyage of the Beagle with a clipper ship and the use of tweets, blogs and wikis to track the progress of students taking a computer science course. And many more fascinating topics were presented in the 12 moderated sessions of papers.
Perhaps the best part of DIVERSE, however, is the atmosphere. As a relatively small conference (just over 160 attendees), DIVERSE has a friendly, convivial feel about it; no surprise, then, that people keep coming back to it year after year. It does a wonderful job of promoting a sense of an international community all focusing on the ways that video (and digital media in general) can be used to enhance the educational experience.
Next year's event will be held in Osnabrück, Germany, 26-28 June. Perhaps we'll see you there!
Wednesday 13 June 2012 8:00am
A powerful, flexible and free online video editor
WeVideo is an online video editor which allows you to upload your video recordings, edit them together, add effects, transitions, graphics, sound effects and voice-over, and integrates very smoothly into YouTube.
There are two versions of WeVideo - a standalone one, hosted on WeVideo's own website, and a simpler (but still powerful and easy to use) version available as a YouTube plug-in:
Both of these apps seem to place ease of use front and centre, with very intuitive interfaces and popular features and templates to make creating polished videos a quick process, without the need for much experience or training in the mystical art of video editing, but both are also considerably more powerful and flexible than YouTube's own clip editor (which doesn't offer much more than compiling of clips).
Other advantages of the online hosted model are the ability (for subscribers only) to collaborate instantly with others at entirely different locations - one person can be recording and uploading footage on location, while her colleagues can be starting to edit the same project in the studio, for example - and for all users the clear benefit of not having to install any software on host machines, often a major barrier on managed machines. Initial tests indicate that upload times are pretty fast, throttled primarily by your internet connection speed.
Of course there are limitations imposed on the outputs for the free versions, with a watermark applied and resolution limits (360p) for videos made with the YouTube plug-in, and storage limits for the standalone editor. These can be removed by buying upgraded rendering on a video-by-video basis (with no subscription involved), or subscriptions are available for their standalone service offering increased storage and higher resolution outputs.
In any case, the free versions are very usable for experimenting and learning the interface and features, as well as making 'quick and dirty' edits, so if you need a video editor this may be a good contender with some unique benefits.
Monday 28 May 2012 8:59am
Three top tips for better webcam video.
Techsmith - makers of Camtasia, Jing and other media capture software - know a thing or two about webcam video. In this micro video (only a minute long) they give three top tips for getting the most from your webcam, be it for screencasting, webinars and remote sessions, or simply video capture:
Wednesday 23 May 2012 10:56am
The OER IPR Support project has released a very helpful 9 step video (5min) that guides you through the key considerations for making OER resources.
The video covers:
If you are new to the concept of OER but are interested in using free resources and making your own open for others to use then check out the JISC OER infokit.
Friday 27 April 2012 11:08am
A quick way to get mono audio from your Mac
I've been looking for a way to get mono audio output from my Macbook for quite a while. Not all the time, but for those occasions when I only have time/space/need for a single speaker, but don't want to lose one stereo channel's content, or I want two mono feeds from the headphone output to route to different destinations (I need to do these odd things occasionally, OK?). I finally found a solution in an unexpected location - Universal Access.
Universal Access is a System Preferences control panel in OSX designed primarily to improve the Mac's user interface for disabled users, and provides many useful tools which do exactly this. More than once, however, I have found these tools also useful for purposes for which they were not necessarily envisioned*, and this is another such occasion. So, to make the stereo output from your Mac into mono, simply open the Universal Access panel in System Preferences, go to the 'Hearing' tab and check 'Play stereo audio as mono' - simple as that! (don't forget to change it back afterwards though).
A monophonic mix of both Left and Right channels will now be output from both sides of the stereo output jack (or audio interface).
*Other uses for Universal Access include
1. making a hotkey combo for a 'dive' zoom - very useful when demonstrating software and wanting a quick close-up of the mouse pointer zone
2. confusing people by switching their Mac's display to white-on-black (Ctrl-Alt-Cmd-8).
3. iPhones can be similarly 'modified' in the General - Accessibility panel [I discovered this when my daughter managed to enable zooming on my phone, and I couldn't switch it off without some investigation]. Try double tapping with three fingers.. ;)
Monday 16 April 2012 11:51am
Some excellent advice and tutorials on Audacity's wiki
Digitising 78rpm records adds a few extra considerations when compared to working with more recent vinyl records, some of which are far from obvious. This post on the Audacity wiki addresses all of these, including stylus choice, equalisation, playback speeds and more, and gives clear and concise explanations of why they are important. A very useful resource if you're wanting to record a stack of old 78s!
Tuesday 13 March 2012 10:14am
Over at UK Web Focus, Brian Kelly raises some interesting points about why using images in a blog post is important.
I wrote my own thoughts in the comments for that blog post, make sure you read the comments too!
Friday 09 March 2012 10:00am
Over at the Loughborough University E-learning blog, Charles Shields introduces a lecturer at the Design School using video to demonstrate metal machining equipment via QR code.
As a result of the large numbers of students, the technicians in the workshops were finding it increasingly difficult to give 1 to 1 tuition. A lot of their time is taken up repeating basic procedures that the students have been taught but are either lacking confidence to use the machines or have forgotten from their first year.
To overcome these problems a number of high quality videos demonstrating a number of FAQ regarding the metal machine shop were produced. The videos were placed on LEARN and on You Tube so the students can access them from within the workshops rather than having to go and find a remote computer to view them. The videos had individual QR codes (see below)associated to them allowing for quick and easy access. These QR codes are printed out and displayed in the workshop.
Video works particular well for 'demonstration' purposes around technique and methods. Not only does the ability to pause and replay the video aid the viewer, but a potential benefit is the lecturer/support can focus on other helpful tasks.
Tuesday 06 March 2012 3:27pm
Yesterday's lunchtime webinar on screencasting, hosted by RSC E Midlands
I spoke for a few minutes about top tips for screencasting during a Blackboard Collaborate online session on screencasting today. Phil Hardcastle and Lyn Lall from the RSC E Midlands gave a whistle-stop tour of the screencasting landscape, with overviews of pedagogy, software, and usage:
My contribution was some top tips for screencast production, from the all-important workflow, via the ever-popular 'keep it short' maxim, to the benefits of the pause button:
[This presentation made its debut at the RSC SW 'Turbo T.E.L.' event hence the 6 minute target - not sure if I hit that today!] A really packed session, with loads of information packed into 45 minutes... nearly. Thanks to Phil and Lyn for their promoting our services and screencasting resources to the community!
Monday 05 March 2012 2:31pm
'The effectiveness of educational podcasts for teaching music and visual arts in higher education' by Cheung On Tam looks at the results of 128 students views on podcasts to support their study.
"This paper reports on a study that investigated the effectiveness of using podcasts to learn music and visual arts in a teacher-education institution. A total of 128 Year-One to Year-Four students completed a survey and 24 students attended focus-group interviews and gave their feedback on the effectiveness of using podcasts in learning. Generally speaking, the students found the podcasts useful and viewed podcasting as a method which could be used to supplement face-to- face teaching."
Tam, C. 2012. The effectiveness of educational podcasts for teaching music and visual arts in higher education [online]. Vol 20, accessed 5th March 2012, p 83-95. Available from Research in Learning Technology.
As you may imagine, as an elearning specialist this paper in particular caught my eye when the latest copy of the journal hit my desk. Of particular interest to me were these themes:
Let me know what you think of the paper and/or your own experiences.
Monday 13 February 2012 9:48am
Over at the Online Journalism Blog, Paul Bradshaw has written a case study on using and understanding narrative to improve your podcasts.
Once you make a few recordings, you generally wish to improve 'how' you go about producing further recordings. I think Paul covers many interesting elements here and I'll be seeing how I can interpret some of this for my own recordings.
Read Podcasting and principles of narrative – a case study, Paul Bradshaw 2012
Monday 06 February 2012 3:31pm
In August 2011 JISC Digital Media joined over 100,000 employers in appointing an Apprentice. Eighteen year-old Amy Bryant joined the JISC Advance service's team in August 2011 as a Business and Administration Apprentice (Service Sector Apprenticeships are one of the fastest growing Apprenticeships).
Amy provides administrative support to the JISC Digital Media team, her responsibilities ranging from maintaining the 'helpdesk' service, booking travel and accommodation, purchasing equipment to organising training; taking delegate bookings, ordering catering, printing course materials, invoicing and sending joining information to delegates.
Working alongside her colleagues Amy is not only benefiting from their experience, gaining job specific skills, but she is also attending college on a weekly basis where she is undertaking a Level 3 NVQ in Business Administration.
Amy Bryant - the JISC Digital Media Apprentice
Amy said "the team have been welcoming from the start of my Apprenticeship… they are happy to share their experiences and knowledge which I really appreciate, I feel as though I've learnt quite a lot! When I first started with the team, words such as 'metadata' and 'screencast' didn't mean anything to me but they do now!"
"I've been given the chance to use equipment and 'have a go' at things that I've never done before. The experience I will have gained by the end of my year with JISC Digital Media will be invaluable and I believe having this Apprenticeship on my CV will certainly impress any future employer. I'm really enjoying my time here and I'm glad I've had the chance to get to know the team; I have a lot of respect for them.
And what is the best part of working with the JISC Digital Media team? "No day is the same – I love the variety of work I am doing and have really enjoyed getting to know the team…oh and Monday tends to be 'cake' day!"
JISC Digital Media Director, Karla Youngs says, "Amy, has rapidly gained a good understanding of our service and provided a great deal of support to both myself and the team, she has in the words of the Apprenticeships organisation been 'good for our business.'"
Monday 06 February 2012 8:31am
The lightmeters built into today's cameras are quite capable of delivering well exposed images of most types of subject. However there are times when the meter gets it wrong.
In a 'typical' scene containing a range of tones from bright highlights through to dark shadows, the camera averages out the tones in the scene and selects a shutter speed and aperture to produce an acceptable image containing a good tonal range.
When pictures are taken of very light subjects, such as our seasonal snowman picture, or very dark subjects the camera's built in light meter may be confused and produce images with anaemic blacks or insipid whites. The photographer can avoid this by dialling in an exposure compensation value. To lighten whites the exposure may be increased (+ value) while dark subjects often benefit from underexposure (- values).
Professional photographers often take a number of images of the same subject with slightly different exposure settings and then select the best exposed image. This is known as exposure bracketing.
Illustration of image with normal exposure on left and with +1stop exposure compensation on right
Image by DCMatt used under the terms of the Creative Commons licence
Friday 27 January 2012 11:20am
The development of an open, universally adopted standard for web video has long been the holy grail for web developers and anyone interested in hosting and distributing video themselves - certainly since Apple dropped Flash support in 2010 for some of its products1. In this search the video element of HTML5 (the latest revision of HTML - currently under development) is seen by many as the answer together with the adoption of at least one video format that is playable on all browsers. However, a new report from LongTail Video, the people behind the popular web video player - JWPlayer - indicates that agreement on this standard remains some way off.
In The State Of HTML5 Video2 LongTail provide a snapshot of browser support for HTML5 video and Flash, mp4 and webM file formats. The report covers embed tag attributes, and support other features like full screen playback, adaptive streaming an accessibility. Essentially, their research indicates that with the exception of Internet Explorer (IE), all browsers support HTML 5 video (the anticipated release of IE10 will support this element). It identifies the biggest challenge to adoption remains the fragmentation of video format support, and reveals that none of the browsers support fully-featured accessibility in HTML5.
1. JISC Digital Media, 2010. HTML5 vs. Flash (à la VHS vs Betamax). Bristol: JISC Digital Media. [Online] Available at: http://www.jiscdigitalmedia.ac.uk/blog/entry/html5-vs-flash-a-la-vhs-vs-betamax [Accessed 27 January 2012]
2. LongTail Ad Solutions, 2012. The State Of HTML5 Video. New York: LongTail Ad Solutions. [Online] Available at: http://www.longtailvideo.com/html5 [Accessed 27 January 2012]
Thursday 26 January 2012 3:23pm
I really enjoyed this talk and from around 30mins in there is some interesting thoughts on the longevity of media file formats and copyright.
Taken from the talk summary:
Our communication methods have improved over time, from stone tablets, papyrus, and vellum through to the printing press and the World Wide Web. But while the web has democratised publishing, allowing anyone to share ideas with a global audience, it doesn’t appear to be the best medium for preserving our cultural resources: websites and documents disappear down the digital memory hole every day. This presentation will look at the scale of the problem and propose methods for tackling our collective data loss.
Wednesday 11 January 2012 10:00am
On Wednesday 18 January at 1:00 pm, JISC Digital Media will run the third in its series of three live, free, online one-hour webinars on video creation.
This webinar will focus on the post-production phase of the video creation process, where the video is constructed from the footage that has been shot and any other relevant materials that have been collected. Topics to be discussed will include basic and more advanced editing techniques, music, delivery formats and accessibility issues. A brief Q&A session will close off the webinar.
Friday 06 January 2012 11:54am
These weekly posts contain links to the various items of interest that the team has come across throughout the week and were previously posted elsewhere such as our mailing lists, twitter, or facebook accounts.
Previous 'Weekly pickings'
Wednesday 04 January 2012 11:06am
A suggestion for a compromised but usable low-cost, lightweight solution to video recording your presentations.
In November I presented edmediashare.org at Media and Learning 2011 with independent consultant Theo Kuechel. The conference was a great event with many thought-provoking presentations from leaders in the field of media in education. Presentations in the main auditorium were professionally recorded by the on-site video crew, but those given in break-out rooms (like mine) were not. Fortunately I had my lightweight video recording kit with me and was able to quickly set up and shoot my part of the presentation - which the Media and Learning 2011 Team have recently uploaded to their Vimeo account:
You can see that the resulting image is not great - the slides are mainly illegible and I am only partially lit. However, because I wore a lapel microphone the sound is reasonably good (considering I used a very cheap radio mic kit) and with the PowerPoint slides added later, the final result is quite usable.
Total cost: approximately £140.
Sadly, Kodak have discontinued all of their cameras that had external microphone inputs. However, the Zi8 and it's replacement - Kodak Playtouch - are currently available from some online stores.
The Lane LWM-300II is recommended for use in education by Reflections Kit. It uses a VHF carrier frequency range (110-130MHz), is susceptible to interference and (as you can hear) carries a fair amount of noise.
Friday 16 December 2011 9:27am
These weekly posts contain links to the various items of interest that the team has come across throughout the week and were previously posted elsewhere such as our mailing lists, twitter, or facebook accounts.
Previous 'Weekly pickings'
Monday 12 December 2011 9:21am
On Wednesday 14 December at 1:00 pm, JISC Digital Media will run the second in its series of three live, free, online one-hour webinars on video creation.
This webinar will focus on the production phase of the video creation process, where the actual shooting of material occurs. It will look at ways to ensure that you get the best possible results at the lowest possible cost (and with the least possble headaches).
On the 18th of January at 1:00 pm we will hold the third webinar in the series which will look at the post-production phase, where the video is constructed from the footage that has been shot and any other relevant materials that have been collected.
Friday 09 December 2011 9:30am
These weekly posts contain links to the various items of interest that the team has come across throughout the week and were previously posted elsewhere such as our mailing lists, twitter, or facebook accounts.
Previous 'Weekly pickings'
Nex week we'll be running a FREE 1hr online session on guidance for shooting video - Wed 14th Dec at 1pm
Tuesday 06 December 2011 2:00pm
As digitisers we often talk about the sustainability of our digital resources from an economic and technical point of view: maintaining access to our valuable and treasured digital resources for the longer term.
But what about environmental sustainability? Do we know as the creators, users and preservers of digital resources what impact digitisation has on the environment?
A new article released today by JISC Digital Media looks at these very questions in "Digitisation and the environment".
Photo Credit: JISC
The article examines the literature and research already available on the subject of Green ICT to establish just exactly what the environmental implications are for those involved in digitisation. It looks at Government policy on carbon reductions; the scope for digitisation to reduce emissions by lessening our dependence on carbon intensive products and activities like travel and use of paper; and goes on to assess the green implications of an ever increasing quantity of digital data created for learning, teaching and research.
The article argues that as digitisers we have a responsibility to involve Green issues in our discourse and to adapt our digitisation methods, processes and workflows to maximise the possibility of an environmentally sustainable future for digitisation.
The article was launched at the first ever national webinar on Green issues, hosted by the JISC RSC London on the 5th of December 2011. A download of the conference, where you can hear the paper being introduced, will be available from their website shortly.
Read "Digitisation and the Environment".
Monday 05 December 2011 11:11am
New advice and guidance on making and using clinical healthcare recordings for learning and teaching has been launched today as the output from a great collaboration project funded through JISC's Strategic and Content Allience and is hosted here on the JISC Digital Media website at Making and Using Clinical and Healthcare Recordings for Learning and Teaching.
Clinical images, videos and other recordings are vital to good teaching and learning within the health care professions. Increasingly these are originated outside the institution that wishes to use them. This raises a number of legal, ethical and other issues relating to their re-use and this new online guide has been created to ensure that guidance on good practice is easily accessible in the community.
The materials have been created by a collaboration of cross-sector organisations and individuals, including the General Medical Council (GMC), Wellcome Trust, Institute for Medical Illustrators, University of Bristol and Newcastle University.
The materials aim to help users of clinical healthcare recordings to:
The guidance is aimed primarily at students, teachers or doctors who wish to use a patient recording for learning and teaching. It will also be of interest and use to other clinical and healthcare workers as well as to university staff where patient recordings are being made available for learning and teaching.
The new advice and guidance materials were launched at a workshop in London at the Wellcome Trust, which will be followed by a free lecture from Sir Donald Irvine on the importance of patient centred medical education.
The advice and guidance materials will be available online from today, visit Making and Using Clinical and Healthcare Recordings for Learning and Teaching.
Friday 02 December 2011 4:46pm
Previous 'Weekly pickings'