The challenge was simple: Take a standard video lecture on a particular topic and vivify it with variety to help increase engagement. The result was rough, messy, incomplete. But it was fun to do and it didn’t take much time because, well, I’m not a perfectionist. That said, there are a few tricks in here that you may want to try if production value is your thing…

The topic for each of these videos is the Framework for video assessment design. I have used this framework to design the following three videos, so they’ve been labelled with the video ‘genre’ they represent: expository, highlighting and point-of-view.

This image contains a link to a description on another page in the LX site.
A space of learning for the use of designed video (Schwartz and Hartman, 2007). The genres are featured in the outer ring of the circle.

Genre #1: Expository

This Expository video is your standard¬† ‘bald middle-aged white guy talking over slides’ genre. However, it has been enhanced by a little Zoom feature you can find in your screen sharing options. It gives you that funky ‘I’m in the slides’ look that you’ll be familiar with from your favourite YouTubers, and a little more personality and presence.

You can activate this feature by going to ‘Share Screen’ in Zoom. Then go to the ‘Advanced’ tab on that window and select ‘Slides as Virtual Background’. This will open the files on your computer where you can choose the PowerPoint presentation you want to use as a background.¬†

Genre #2: Highlighting

This approach involves paper-slides and pencast techniques. I’ll be honest, I didn’t find this that easy to do and it was a bit disorienting because I had to write on the page from an angle I wasn’t used to. It’s also fairly unscripted which is why it drags on with me chatting more than I should have. But hopefully you get the idea. It’s the same content I delivered in the Expository video but with a little more rough and ready annotation filmed under a webcam on a piece of paper.

If you’re one of those lucky people with an iPad or iPhone, you can connect directly to Zoom with that device for any free-hand pencasting and annotation you want to do.

Genre #3: Point of view

As you can see, this was the one I enjoyed making the most. I also personally think this is the most enjoyable to watch. Sure we could’ve improved the production a bit more, maybe mixed this with a pencast or slides, but keep in mind this is an incomplete guide.

The one rookie mistake I made was recording this with Snagit screen recording software instead of using Zoom’s in-built gallery view recording function. Had I used Zoom, I could’ve used a shared slide to display the framework instead of just having a third participant in there with the framework as their avatar image. ¬†

Screenshot indicates how to record gallery view with shared screen in Zoom
1. Go to and open Settings
2. Open the Recording tab
3. Check the box labelled ‘Record gallery view with shared screen’

What next?

Want to learn more about video genre switching? Join us at the next UTS Video Meetup on August 31st for the low-down.

Feature image by Christian Michelides, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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