UoMan Archives - Ecolearning

sMOOC Step by Step team

MOOC e-teachers support

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“sMOOC Step by Step” is a free Massive Open Online Course – MOOC is being made available by ECO, which is a European project based on Open Educational Resources (OER), that gives free access to a list of MOOCs in 6 languages, in most languages via Closed Captions (via YouTube subtitles).

This article forms integral part of that course. Our fourth edition has been already launched so you enrol!

SupportingsMOOC Step by Step teamg instructors of massive open online courses -MOOCs- may be just as important to the creation of long-term, successful courses as attracting and supporting students, according to a group of researchers.

“Most of the research on how we can make MOOCs successful has focused on the student side – how do we attract and retain them, for instance – but now attention is starting to switch to instructors, who make the MOOCs happen,” said Saijing Zheng, a doctoral candidate in information sciences and technology, Penn State. “So, it’s important to know the motivations of the instructors for teaching in this new format and their experiences and challenges when they teach these MOOCs.”

Zheng said that while MOOC students may need support during certain stages of the course, instructors face several challenges throughout the course development and instruction process, which the researchers broke into three phases: preparation, implementation and feedback.

Instructors reported that teaching a MOOC was different from teaching traditional college courses, adding that some aspects that attracted them to teaching a MOOC were also challenges. For example, the size of a class can be a motivation, as well as a burden, Zheng said.

“It’s a significant motivation for the instructors to reach thousands of students, but, in many cases, they are used to providing one-on-one guidance in a traditional classroom format,” said Zheng. “So a MOOC can be a bit overwhelming to them, if they maintain those expectations.”

Having a global impact on students, professional growth, research opportunities and enhanced name recognition were other reasons they gave for teaching MOOCs, but these also may present new challenges.

Workload during the preparation phase of the course was another concern, according to the instructors.

While most instructors and universities use traditional retention rates to determine the success of the MOOC, online courses attract different types of students and may require different metrics to measure success.

“In previous research we discovered that there are lots of data that show about 90 percent of students in MOOC classes leave the course after two weeks, which is very different from a traditional course,” said Zheng. “This may mean that MOOC students may have different motivations for attending the class — they may just be curious, or attend just so they can get materials to study on their own time.”

Feedback is critical to improving the on line courses and may require the creation of technology to provide feedback to instructors in a timely manner.

“The goal, then, as researchers and designers, is to take this feedback and hopefully provide support for the instructors’ needs,” Zheng said. “By improving support for the instructors and their collaborators, we may also improve the MOOC experience for students and other stakeholders.

If you would like to become the instructor of your own MOOC, after completed “sMOOC Step by Step” please apply to “Become an e-teacher”. We can’t wait to see what you create. – Team UoMan.

Note: Article idea and some texts are taken from:https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/02/160229182538.htm

Step by Step intro video

Would you like to know how to create your own MOOC? sMOOC Step by Step

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Now that MOOCs are hitting the scene, everyone wants to jump on board! Granted, some want to get into the game in the hopes of making some money (somehow?), but others genuinely want to know how they can create their own MOOC for educational purposes. Well, you have options!

Create powerful, interactive on line learning experiences has never been easier.

Everyone is an expert at something. But right now if you want to share knowledge on line you’re mostly limited to bogs, videos and slide decks.

This free Massive Open Online Course – MOOC is being made available by ECO, which is a European project based on Open Educational Resources (OER), that gives free access to a list of MOOCs in 6 languages, in most languages via Closed Captions (via YouTube subtitles).

Step by Step intro video

From full courses to short lessons and homework assignments, people can create unique experiences for students and embed them virtually anywhere on the web.

This course offers a practical and theoretical approach, is designed to help you experience a booming 21st century learning process as well as help you create your own sMOOC (social MOOC) in a step by step way.

It has been developed by a multidisciplinary team from a dozen professional institutions and has been built with their own MOOC experience and expertise in the ECO project and in accordance with its specific pedagogical model based on social constructivism.

Once you completed “sMOOC Step by Step” course, we will provide you with a space in one of our ECO’s platforms to host – for free – the SMOOC you create. It will be very easy:

  • Join up with fellow e-teachers and work together on your MOOC contents.
  • Set up your course on the platform
  • Your MOOC starts
  • Your MOOC ends

Align learning with the expectations and empower teachers to create rich interactive multi-media blended learning experiences.

Check it out!. We can’t wait to see what you create after completed “sMOOC Step by Step– Team UoMan.

What video production style to choose for a MOOC? Typologies of Video Production Styles

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MOOCs can distribute content in a scalable and high-quality format to a large number of learners around the world. This MOOC is available to learners who want to teach or communicate via the medium of video and the art of video production.

This article forms integral part of the on line MOOC course Videos for teaching, learning and communication, created by The University of Manchester.

Considering that video is the main method of content delivery in MOOCs, we are going to provide you an overview of video production styles. So you will have more information about what video style to choose for recording your own MOOC.

A video production style is the main method of visual organization that is employed to realize a video’s goals and achieve specific results when the video is viewed.

When thinking about video for learning, the choice of video production style will have a great impact on a video’s ability to effect pedagogical objectives and desired learning outcomes.

Typologies of Video Production Styles.

When choosing a production style, it is important to keep in mind the video’s goals and desired results. Different production styles have different affordances, so it is vital that the selection process be both: thoughtful and intentional.

The main production styles that are currently being used in on-line learning context are:

Talking Head:

  • Common style typically shot in a studio.
  • Can be used to build a connection between the person on-camera and the viewer.
  • Multiple camera angles may be used for easier editing and to break the monotony.

Presentation Slides with Voice-Over:

  • Could be PowerPoint or any other presentation format, with voice-over and slides visible full screen.
  • Annotations on a slide can be used to highlight information or draw the viewer’s attention to a specific detail.


  • Ability to show slides and instructor at the same time.

Text Overlay:

  • Text or graphics overlaid onto a video.
  • Can be used to summarize main points, highlight keywords, and phrases, or visualize what is being discussed.

Khan-Style Tablet Capture:

  • ‘Chalk and talk’ style made on a tablet.
  • Relatively cheap and easy to produce.
  • Presenter typically uses a conversational tone.

Udacity-Style Tablet Capture:

  • Voice overlay over digital whiteboard / writing hand.
  • Presenter’s hand captures using an overhead camera, but made semi-transparent in post –production, so writing is not obscured.

Actual Paper / Whiteboard:

  • A low-tech alternative to digital tablet capture.
  • Could be an upright whiteboard, or an overhead shot of a piece of paper on a desk.


  • Recording whatever is on the instructor’s screen and adding an audio voice-over.
  • Very versatile, can be used for any on-screen content.
  • Commonly used for technical training, software training, and step-by-step video tutorials.
  • Relatively cheap to produce.


  • Useful to visualize abstract concepts and relations.
  • Can range from very simple to highly sophisticated.

Classroom Lecture:

  • Filming a traditional lecture in a classroom.

Recorded Seminar:

  • Recording a seminar discussion, often with the professor and current or the past students of the course.
  • Can be useful to give viewers the feeling that they are in class together with other learners.


  • A good way to involve outside experts from a particular field.
  • Gives viewers access to a leading expert’s opinions and ideas about a relevant topic.


  • An informal conversation about a particular topic, typically featuring the instructor(s) and perhaps a guest.
  • Typically unscripted, authentic conversations, which may help build a connection between the presenters and the viewer.
  • Can be used as a method for reflecting on discussions and happenings within the course.

Live Video:

  • Live virtual office hours can help instructors establish a presence in the course.
  • Hangouts-on-Air can also be useful to bring in external experts.
  • Gives students a chance to get their questions answered live.

Web Cam Capture:

  • Relatively cheap to produce, web cams are easily accessible.
  • Similar to a talking head style video, but more informal and not shot in a studio.


  • Allows viewers to see a concept, process in action, rather than just seeing someone talking about it.
  • Can give viewers special access to art, tools, etc.
  • Very useful for showing experiments that viewer would not otherwise be able to see or do on their own.


  • A great way to take viewers to places that they might otherwise not be able to go or see things from a new perspective.
  • An uncontrolled environment makes this format more risky to film

Green Screen:

  • A green screen can be used to substitute different
  • Requires proper equipment, lighting and post production.

Two video production styles that are featured prominently in many MOOCs: the talking head style, where the instructor is recorded lecturing into the camera, and the tablet capture with voice-over style.

It is, of course, possible to combine two or more of them in one video, thereby achieving different results than could be produced with any of these formats on its own.
One common combination is often referred to as a ‘bookend’ approach, which usually features the talking head style at the beginning and the end of the video, with a tablet capture or screen cast used in between.

So, have you thought about what video production style to choose for your next MOOC?

Following the idea of being ‘Massive’, why not share it on your Social Media sites, with your friends, and see if they might like to join them on this course.

For an introvideo to the course, please watch the below:

We look forward to seeing you there! – Team UoMan.

Note: Article idea and some texts are taken from: Hansch, A., McConachie, K., Hillers, L. and Prof. Dr. Schildhauer,T. (2015). TopMOOC Research Project. ‘The Role of Video in Online Learning: Findings From the Field and Critical Reflections‘.