Two (virtual) heads are better than one for online lectures

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Bo Kelestyn and I were asked to do an online version of our Introduction to Design Thinking lecture for the Humanitarian Engineering MSc at Warwick University. We followed the advice of the Academic Technology team, and split it into a pre-recorded video followed by a live (synchronous) Q&A session in Microsoft Teams. This worked really well. The Q&A was very lively, with great questions and examples coming from the students. But we were also especially pleased with our recorded lecture. We discovered something new to us: recording an online lecture as a pair, in dialogue, produces a far more engaging result.

We did this using Microsoft Teams, recorded using its built-in integration with Microsoft Stream (which gives a nice crisp screen recording). Bo scheduled it as a Teams meeting with just the two of us as participants. I shared the presentation slides from my computer. And we worked through the presentation, each adding out own perspectives and discussing the topics.

Here’s the video for you to watch as an example. Notice that we are “talking heads” in the bottom right corner. Feedback from the students confirmed that seeing us there on the screen was really important to them. I have downloaded the video from Microsoft Stream (which is restricted to members of our organisation) and uploaded to YouTube.

Dr Robert O'Toole NTF

Senior Academic Technologist, IT Services, University of Warwick Fellow of the Higher Education Academy National Teaching Fellow Warwick Award for Teaching Excellence

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