Learning About Screencasting
A few months ago David Anderson started a new type of E-Learning Hero Challenge – creating screencasts (which are short ‘how-to’ video clips). I mentioned in an earlier blog post that one of the areas I wanted to build knowledge and skills in was screencasting so these new challenges would be a great opportunity to get started.
Another reason why these challenges appealed to me is that most of my role at B Online Learning is about teaching others – how to use Storyline 2 and the process of creating an eLearning module – so the challenges also seemed like a good fit in that regard just a different way of teaching and sharing what I know and a way to help develop my communication skills.
Creating these short how-to videos is something new for me so these early ones were a bit rough but I figure they’ll get better over time. Anyway, here’s a few of things I’ve learned so far when creating my screencasts:
I’ve found that the recording works better if you plan what you’re going to record and have a run through to make sure that things work the way you want them to and you know where you want to click. I don’t have a word for word script but I like to think through what I’m going to say as I do the practice. I tried off-the-cuff but it didn’t work for me.
I record my screencasts in my office at home and I shut the door and window to reduce any background noise. Initially I found the audio still wasn’t that great but I was using an old headset with a mic. I do have a USB microphone (Audio Technica) but when I tried it, it seemed to pick up ambient noise. So, I went to JB Hi-Fi and I found a Skype Headset (it has a USB connection and a noise cancelling microphone) and I’m much happier with the quality.
Recording Window Size
I use Articulate Replay to record my screencasts as it came with my SL2 licence and meant that I didn’t have to buy another program. It’s easy to use and I’m happy with the output. When you open up Replay you can set the size of the recording window to whatever size you need and initially I was recording at about 1000 x 700 but I found that when I looked at the recording on a larger monitor that it became a bit blurry and I think it was because the recording was being enlarged to fit on a bigger screen? Anyway, I asked my friend Veronica (another regular screencaster) what size she used and she said was using around 1430 x 860. Hers looked cleaner so I increased the recording size and it seems to have helped in the latest recording – ‘Using Master Slides’. So I’ll keep experimenting.
Click on the image below to see my most recent screencast and you can see all the recording that I’ve created in the Videos section of this site. Let me know what you think.
If you’re wondering about the circle animation that you see in my recordings, it’s a setting on your computer. Go to the Control Panel > Mouse > Pointer Options tab > select Show location of pointer when I press the CTRL key > Ok. That’s it!
To see all of the screencast challenge topics, click here.
If you’ve done any screen recording before please share any tips you have in the comments below.