The use of Lecture CaptureÂ is expanding in both Higher Ed and K-12. What kinds ofÂ tools and technologiesÂ are beingÂ used to capture and rebroadcast lecture content?
One of the main reasons that I blog is to learn -Â picking a technologyÂ from theÂ expandingÂ array of thoseÂ being used in education today, researching it, and sharing my findings here. I've been wanting toÂ learn more about Lecture Capture and the technology that enables it for some time now, so off we go.
If you want to learn about something (and you're a techÂ geek like me), “Google” it.Â A GoogleÂ search forÂ the phrase “lecture capture” returnedÂ Educause's,Â â€œ7 things you should know about … Lecture Captureâ€ articleÂ as one of the top results.Â I'm not particularly surprised byÂ this, as Educause has produced manyÂ of these wonderfulÂ 2 page overviews of Ed Tech topics. I highly recommend giving this article a read through for a nice overall picture of what lecture capture is, a little aboutÂ how it works, concerns and issues to be aware of, and more.
We're going to focus on the technology in this post.
Lecture capture tools and systems can scale up or down to meet your needs
Because lecture capture can incorporate different elements of the lecture process, lecture capture can be performed in various degrees, using a wide variety of tools. SomeÂ efforts at lecture capture consist of just an audio stream, perhaps coupled with PowerPoint slides or other electronic documents. These can be made available as podcasts, coupled with the associated files. In fact, many schoolsÂ use some form ofÂ this type of approach today.
On the higher end of the spectrum are robust systems that help to facilitate and automate the entire lecture capture and delivery process. A growing number of higher educationÂ institutions have made significant investments in these types of systems (along withÂ many K-12 schools, businesses, healthcare organizations,Â government, etc.).
Thanks to the many ways in which lecture capture can be approached,Â one can experiment with the process on a small scale, knowing that larger systems are available to move on to if an organizationÂ wishes to.
Starting with aÂ look a someÂ full-featuredÂ lecture capture systems
I've decided to first get a sense of what a complete lecture capture packageÂ consists of, and then consider less costly alternatives (havingÂ become aware of the various elements one might wish to try and provide inÂ a more scaled down approach).
Following are a few of the large scale systems available in today's marketplace, and a snippet or two ofÂ information about them. This listing is intended as a jumping-off point. I will be posting more aboutÂ some of these tools, and others, next week when I look more closely at features and functionality. For more detailed information in the meanwhile, visit the vendor's product web sites (provided), or check out the articles provided below.
Sonic Foundry's/Mediasite: According to a June, 2009 article from Campus Technology, Sonic Foundry (at that time) held 40+ percent of the lecture capture market if you include business, education, gov't, and health care. Obviously a player and product to be aware of in this market.
Panopto/CourseCast: Panopto claims great flexibity, no need for proprietary hardware, and low total cost of ownership among theÂ benefits of their CourseCast product. One very interesting angle is their Socrates program in which they offer CourseCast for free to Academic institutions in exchange for participation in their beta and development programs, and agreement to provide use-case studies for potential marketing purposes.
Elluminate/Learning Suite: I've participated in web events using Elluminate, but I have to confess, I was not aware that they offerÂ lecture capture and related functionality. Elluminate's different types of tools and functionality, their solution hosting capabilities, and their flat-fee open access pricing all seem to position them somewhat uniquely.
Echo360/EchoSystem: Echo360 (formerly ‘Anystream') appears to be focused purely on lecture capture and delivery, selling only the EchoSystem product. This overview page gives a nice visual of the functionality of their system. I also noticed that they own the domain “lecturecapture.com“, where they host an interactiveÂ lecture capture community.
DyKnow/Vision: DyKnow couples their Vision Interactive Education System with their Monitor Classroom Management Software to provide a integrated tool set for lecture capture and delivery and tight control over student use of computers in the classroom.
This brief list is really just a sampling of some of theÂ popular products in the category. There's still a lot more to learn as we delve into features and functions of theseÂ andÂ otherÂ lecture capture applicationsÂ next week.
More in-depth articles on lecture capture
If you want to learn a little more and can't wait until next week's post, IÂ found these articles to be very informative (in addition toÂ Educause's “7 thingsÂ about …” article cited above):
- “Engaging Lecture Capture: Lights, Camara … Interaction!“, by Margie Martyn, inÂ Educause Quarterly
- “Capturing the Market“,Â Â by Rama Ramaswami, from Campus Technology
- “Lecture Capture BonusÂ – Instant Replay”, by Rama Ramaswami, from Campus Technology
- “Lecture Capture: A Fresh Look“, by Ann McClure, from University Business
Next: A closer look atÂ features and functions
For next week's post, we'll take a deeper dive intoÂ some of the features of these tools. After that, we'll consider how to approach this in a start-up mode (for those of us wanting to just get our feet wet, and those of us with aÂ smaller budget than some ofÂ the schools who useÂ the high end tools).
In closing, let me again reach out to readers to seek your feedback, questions, or observations. If you have experience with any of these types of tools and wish to share something with us, please comment and do so. If you have questions,Â don't hesitate to ask, and I'll see if I can't provide some useful feedback. Thanks!
Related Posts (if the above topic is of interest, you might want to check these out):
A Dozen Great Free Online Video Lecture Sites
New Web Site WatchKnow.org (1000â€™s of Free Educational Videos)
TeacherTube, and other YouTube alternatives for instructional use