Nine Factors to Consider When Choosing a Lecture Capture System

We’ve outlined nine factors to consider as you research lecture capture systems. These factors are not specific to a single vendor, giving technologists a fair look at what matters when selecting a lecture capture solution. 

What is Lecture Capture?

The ideal lecture capture solution should help educational institutions enable a rich learning experience both inside and outside the classroom. Students should be able to learn as if they were in class, no matter where they choose to watch lectures.

Lecture capture is defined as the process of recording an instructional lecture for consumption after class. More specifically, it enables students to watch, skip, and re-watch the video, just as other modern streaming video applications allow.

If you consider all the elements of a modern lecture today, there’s often much more needed than a simple video recording. Lecture capture solutions should and can capture webcam video, digital whiteboards, and even computer screens used during a lecture. In addition to lecture capture, an ideal solution also provides for comprehensive video content management.

The ideal lecture capture solution should help educational institutions enable a rich learning experience both inside and outside the classroom. Students should be able to learn as if they were in class, no matter where they choose to watch lectures.

1. Choose a Lecture Capture Solution that Integrates with Existing Technology

Naturally, lecture capture isn’t the only technology that educational institutions need to provide an interactive learning experience. Because other software tools are typically used, it’s imperative that your lecture capture solution meets LTI (Learning Tools Interoperability) standards. 

By meeting these standards, your video capture solution will integrate with other learning systems. SSO (Single Sign-On) integration also makes it easy for students and teachers to use one username and password to sign into all learning systems.

2. Seek a Solution that Captures Video in Multiple Ways

As institutions grow, their lecture capture needs change. Look for a solution that offers multiple ways to capture video, including the option to select from a hardware appliance (premise-based solution), software-based (cloud), mobile, and browser-based solutions. With the entire suite of options available, technologists can choose the one that will best serve students based on their specific learning scenario.

3. Select a Multi-Camera Lecture Caption Solution

Find a solution that allows multiple cameras to capture an in-classroom event, like a medical procedure, along with documents. This is also helpful in large lecture halls where it’s difficult for students to see a demonstration or other visual material. These students may miss key aspects of the visual lecture from a single angle.

4. Ensure Encoding Enables Video Playback on Any Device

A phone, tablet and laptop computer display the YuJa Video Platform Media Library.Without proper video encoding, the media may not play on a variety of devices. Because students often consume video on mobile devices—whether it’s a smartphone or a tablet—it’s critical that your lecture capture solution enables captured video to play on any device. Look for a solution that utilizes adaptive bitrate streaming and network-sensing technology, which aids in an uninterrupted, smooth user experience.

5. Opt for Easy-to-Use Video and Caption Editing

It’s important to find a lecture capture solution that allows for multi-stream, non-destructive editing within a web browser. Because no additional software has to be downloaded, this makes video editing a breeze. Ideally, sequenced image thumbnails support easy editing. Smart workflows make it easy to trim, cut and insert video. Text or image overlay is also widely used by instructors to emphasize key ideas. Finally, it should be easy to insert metadata, including inline caption editing or a table of contents.

6. Seek out Scheduled Recordings to Make Recording Easy

For live-streaming events as well as lectures, your solution should make it possible to schedule a recording ahead of time. This frees up the instructor or additional support staff to focus on the live event itself or on students, instead of on the recording process. Recordings should be able to be initiated from a web browser, allowing for remote monitoring of the recording process. In the event a lecture runs beyond the pre-recorded time, instructors can extend a recording with just a click of a button.

7. Choose a Lecture Capture Solution that Is Easy to Use for All Skill Levels

Even less computer-savvy users should be able to initiate and use lecture capture systems. With automated recording, instructors can focus on knowledge transfer versus pushing the right buttons to start a recording. Instructors should also be able to pause or extend a recording with a click of a button. Once a lecture recording is complete, the video should be easily publishable in minutes to an institution’s Learning Management System (LMS).

8. Find a Lecture Capture Solution that Scales as Your Organization Grows

As usage and adoption of video increases at your educational institution, the lecture capture solution you choose should grow with you. Be sure to understand the cost of your solution whether you have 100 users or 10,000 users. If the solution you choose becomes too costly as users are added, it might offer scalability, but at a high cost.

9. Focus on Media Recoverability

In the event there is an issue with recording, like a failure to end the video or a loss of power, you should have the option to recover and edit the video. This ensures problem-free recording and protects against the potential loss of content.

If you’d like to learn how YuJa can provide the technology needed for lecture capture and more, click here to schedule a demo.


Getting the Most from Your Video Content Management System

At its basic level, a Video Content Management System is software that enables institutions and organizations to centralize, manage, store, and deliver video online.

Beyond these capabilities, an all-in-one, enterprise-wide VCMS integrates within your existing enterprise systems, including your LMS, SSO, CMS, and intranet, and deploying a CMS reduces both the operational and capital expenses associated with maintaining a large multimedia library, providing storage, organization and access to video content.

A Video CMS Stores Media Content 

Storage is a significant concern for many institutions. The costs, storage space, equipment and personnel to maintain a large amount of video storage can be substantial, particularly if your institution uses an on-premise solution or the storage provided within various video conferencing solutions like Zoom. 

Cloud-based video content management solutions offer an alternative to on-site storage. With a cloud-based service, your video content is secure and accessible; however, there are no additional obligations with regard to adequate equipment, space and personnel. The cloud makes it easy to scale storage either up or down depending on the institution’s needs.

Keep Videos Organized in a Media Library

Organizing large amounts of data poses an immense challenge for corporations and educational institutions alike. Without smart organization strategies, there’s no way to easily locate media content, and users won’t be able to find or use content effectively. Yuja media library

Various tools in a video content management system include channels, folders and subfolders, along with the ability to publish content between multiple folders within your media library. Full-featured search tools allow users to search by course, keyword, tags, and more: 

  • Organizational Structures: Folders and subfolders allow users to organize content. The folder structure is familiar to users, as it’s a standard organizational system on both Windows and PC operating systems. Within the YuJa Video Platform, folders are created within individual channels. The channels determine overall access, while the folders organize data and support some permission settings in the Campus Channel.
  • Publishing Tools: Publishing content to multiple folders is an effective way to make content available. For example, a departmental policies and procedures video could be published to every course in the department for quick reference no matter who needs it.
  • Search Capabilities: A high-quality, full-featured search function is essential for an effective VCMS. Users need to be able to find the files on the system using different keywords. The ability to search different fields, like the title, slide content, owner or tags is essential to support effective use of video content.

Provide Easy Access to Multimedia Files

The final key component to the video content management system is access and ensuring content is securely stored and viewable by the intended audience. For most institutions, content falls into several different categories.

  • Public content: Public content should be available and accessible to anyone, including those outside of the institution.
  • Internal content: Internal content is accessible by those within the institution who have been granted access, typically via an admin or user account credentials.
  • Administrative content: This is available only to specific subsets of users such as administrators, instructors or course designers. 

In addition to these permission levels, institutions must be able to control who can add, remove or move content within the system. User roles or levels simplify this process, reducing administrative time while maintaining security and stability within the system.

YuJa Provides Open LMS Support

YuJa recently announced that it is an Open LMS Certified Provider. Open LMS is the commercial provider of the open source Moodle learning management system and maintains the Blackboard Collaborate plugin. Now, YuJa’s Video Platform seamlessly integrates with Open LMS, as well as other Moodle™-based LMS systems.

“The YuJa Enterprise Video Platform operates as both a standalone learning solution, as well as, an integrated solution within an existing LMS, like Open LMS, through LTI integration.”

This integration will make it easier for instructors to upload and manage videos directly in the Moodle/OpenLMS environment. The YuJa Enterprise Video Platform provides organizations with tools to store, organize, and access media content, and all media content that has been added to the Video Platform is made available directly through an institution’s LMS.

“YuJa has been included into our plugin matrix as an approved vendor plugin and is now a Standard Vendor,” the OpenLMS team shared. “This means that if a customer asks to integrate our LMS with (YuJa) they will be able to do it.”

Open LMS, which uses open-source software to deliver engaging learning experiences, leverages the YuJa Enterprise Video Platform to, among other things, auto-encode uploaded videos, deliver them over a global content delivery network, and provide captioning within the Open LMS platform. The YuJa Enterprise Video Platform operates as both a standalone learning solution, as well as, an integrated solution within an existing LMS, like Open LMS, through LTI integration.

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