Crafting Video for Instruction & Feedback

Solidify understanding and increase your presence

What is It?

Video is a medium that allows you to add visual, aural, and personal elements to your course. Including video content can improve not only student impressions of the course delivery, but their understanding of the material. With video, you are able to craft managed and polished presentations of content, directed feedback, as well as boost your personal presence as an instructor.

Tools like webcams, USB microphones, smartphone cameras or even a full-featured production studio allow you to create content that that will let you flip your classroom, that is tailored for your students’ needs, or that you can reuse across your courses. The visual and personal presence of you as an instructor can help reinforce explanations of concepts, and clarify to students that you are available to them and their goals in the course.

How Can I Use Video in My Course?

Why integrate video into class?

  • Increase instructor presence
  • Quickly link how-to instructional videos
  • Flip your classroom lectures in your face-to-face class
  • Respond specifically to student questions or concerns

Some ideas for how to use video:

  • An introductory video to welcome and orient students
  • Topic-focused lectures personalized from your perspective and experience
  • Guest lectures
  • Student presentations

Recommended Technologies

Recording and editing:

Publication and interactivity:

How-to Instructions and DIY

Questions and Considerations

Things to remember:

  • Use a script or a detailed outline
  • Keep it short (<10 minutes)
  • Give it a test run and be prepared to shoot multiple times
  • Use a prop or talk to a human
  • Find a quiet place
  • Make sure you are well lit. Position yourself so that the light source is in front of you.
  • Make captions available

CTL Media Services

UAF CTL jointly manages a full-service production studio space in Rasmuson 375a, and two DIY learning glass studios in Irving I Room 303 and Bunnell 143C. To access media services from CTL, please submit a request form below. To learn more about the capabilities of the studios, visit the Media Studio page on CTL.

Faculty Interviews

Dr. Abel Bult-Ito on Video Content

Dr. Bult-Ito spoke briefly at the October 2015 iTeach faculty development seminar on creating video content in his online lab course. He created over 100 introductory and instructional videos for his course.

Research Foundations

Online video as a media genre is still relatively new, and much of the research is still developing. However, the overwhelming conclusion across contemporary research into video content in online courses is positive.

As early as 2005, a study by Choi & Johnson investigated student attention and motivation in an online course. They compared engagement with video content modules versus text-based content and found that students significantly found video materials to be easier to attend to as well as more motivating.

Melanie Hibbert of Columbia University conducted in-depth interviews with online students and found that overall students appreciated and expected a sophisticated course to naturally include video (Hibbert, 2014). Among many remarkable findings, two stand out. First,  the videos rated as the most engaging were those where instructors allowed their own wit and personality to come through. Second, the average viewing time across all videos in their learning management system was just four minutes.

This finding, of the importance of concise content, is another recurring finding in the research. A 2010 study of video tutorials at a university library found that although an institution-wide effort was made to limit instructional videos to three minutes, many students still found that to be too long (Bowles-Terry, Hensley & Hinchliffe). The point is that students want their course content to get to the point, and are not afraid to skip around to get there themselves.


Bowles-Terry, M., Hensley, M. K., & Hinchliffe, L. J. (2010). Best practices for online video tutorials in academic libraries: A study of student preferences and understanding. Communications in Information Literacy, 4(1), 17-28.

Choi, H. J., & Johnson, S. D. (2005). The effect of context-based video instruction on learning and motivation in online courses  (PDF). The American Journal of Distance Education, 19  (4), 215-227.

Hibbert, M. C. (2014). What Makes an Online Instructional Video Compelling?. Educause Review Online.

Sean Holland

Sean Holland

Associate Director of Learning Innovation