NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences where I work has adopted Distance Learning with Rich Media as a way of supporting our students throughout their complete study. Lecturers are expected to participate in using our system of on-line Web lectures which is based on Presentations2Go in whatever form their lectures may take. There is a protocol whereby the individual lecturer can decline. We offer training and coaching sessions to all of our lecturers. Something that is quite difficult but necessary, is the screentesting that we carry out. Not everyone can stand in front of a camera and give a lecture, especially in one of our TV studios, which is such an artificial environment for the lecturers. At the beginning of each trimester, our students are informed about privacy laws. We explain the opt-out option to them whereby if they do not want to be recorded then they should sit behind the camera. Most of our students realize that it is in their own benefit to be able to watch these recordings and there is little or no use of the opt-out. We also take into account the reality that every student has the right to revoke his or her permission to be recorded, as stated in the European GDPR law introduced in May 2018. We are also looking at how we can integrate the “Legitimate Interest” clause in the student’s college contract.
Using our latest technology www.clicknlinc.com whereby we can place an extra layer on top of a video, we only register the movements of the mouse. This generates data that cannot be attributed to just one person, so unlike the situation with eye tracking software, we do not have any problems with privacy rules or laws.
The resulting Heat Map from the data is completely anonymous. Each lecturer can use the data to facilitate Learning Analytics. To help us analyze the data we needed feedback from our students; we gave them a questionnaire asking why, for example, a particular moment in the video is frequently clicked? Was it unclear, or did it stimulate more interest on their part or were they simply looking for more information? We could use their answers to better understand what was working well and what not .
Our online platform also gives us a lot of security. There are two sections in our system; one is the public area and the for the other you have to log in via the University’s network. Within this protected area, we are able to allow only one person to watch a dedicated program. This can be necessary when you have recordings of a real life family situation which is being assisted by a Social Worker which can only be watched by a select number of students who may be allowed to watch for a limited time only.
In our classroom studios, we encountered a problem with the sound recording. The lecturers are requested to wear a headset microphone or a revere microphone, both using a radio transmitter. During the pause, the microphone transmitter was quite often switched off. After the pause, the lecturer often forgot to switch the transmitter back on when the lecture resumed, resulting in a lecture without any sound. We have solved this problem by using a special Shure ceiling microphone unit with 20 microphones pointing in all directions giving a guaranteed sound recording.
For most of the recorded lectures, the links to the video are placed into Blackboard where the course material is available for the students.
Richard Aldridge, NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands