Total Faculty (approximately, including adjunct)
The Need for a Video Partner
Approximately four years ago, Clarkson College migrated to a new Learning Management System (LMS). Even before the migration, the college recognized it had a need for faculty to be able to upload and store recorded video, lectures and other media into its LMS. But for all the advantages the faculty found in using the new system, there were some drawbacks that neces- sitated finding a flexible, dynamic video partner.
In seeking a Video Platform, Clarkson College officials looked for a versatile product that could provide additional storage space for files and videos, the ability to record and auto caption videos, editing capabilities and a host of other benefits to better meet the needs of instructors and students.
Meeting the Challenge Head-On
YuJa equipped Clarkson College with Canvas-integrated video management, a campus- wide lecture capture platform and captioning capabilities, along with on-the-fly recording capabilities and a built-in video editor that does not require the use of additional applications.
Before implementing YuJa’s Enterprise Video Platform, faculty would often have to visit the Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE) to process their videos and upload them. “YuJa eliminated that step. Faculty and staff have figured out how to use the YuJa recorder and embed it on the Canvas page, which has made the process easier for everybody,” noted Dr. Ricardo Varguez, Director of the CTE at Clarkson College.
Instructors and students have been pleased that videos uploaded through YuJa’s video platform play and function well across different platforms. “It has been huge for us,” Varguez shared. “Before, some faculty were using different programs that would only play if students had the right browser and connection speeds, which isn’t ideal.”
About Clarkson College
Clarkson College is a private, accredited, non-profit college in Omaha, Nebraska, that was founded in 1888 as the first school of nursing in the state. Over more than 130 years, the college has been established at a new campus, expanded its program offerings and adopted a new name, all while maintaining a commitment to preparing students to be the best in various realms of health care.
Auto-captioning is popular not only because of how quickly captions are generated, but because they can make a video more accessible to students with visual impairments or a preference to read captions to facilitate their learning. “The ability to auto-caption was one of the most important considerations in our selection process,” Varguez said. He added that since launching the video platform three years ago, auto-caption accuracy has improved significantly and punctuation has been added for clarity. If a student has accommodations that require closed captioning to be more accurate, it’s easy for the instructor to outsource captioning to a third-party service through YuJa’s Video Platform.
Implementation and Benefits of Deploying the Video Platform
“The ability to auto-caption was one of the most important considerations in our selection process.”
Clarkson College’s faculty and staff quickly got on board with the YuJa Video Platform. Since deployment, the number of users has steadily increased, with high adoption rates among both faculty and staff. The entire campus now uses YuJa’s Video Platform as the main video repository. As users increased, so did file uploads, captioning minutes and the amount of storage the college needed. When it was time to upgrade, Varguez said the process was an easy one. “There’s great customer service and support, and it’s nice that someone is keeping an eye on our usage so we have one less thing to worry about,” he said.
Since the implementation, the number of support tickets has declined. “Before YuJa, we had issues where students and faculty would contact my department to try and figure out why a video would play for some and not others or to learn why files weren’t compatible with certain browsers,” Varguez shared.
Faculty can deliver lectures in a timely manner, and instructors understand how to create videos that can be saved to their video archive for later use. When the pandemic hit, Clarkson College faculty found that they already had training and tutorials to help them deliver coursework online. “We already knew the software and could build on our knowledge base,” Varguez remarked, “We were lucky that many faculty had already been teaching online courses, so it wasn’t difficult to transition to a semi-online format.”
Because of the flexibility offered by YuJa’s products, faculty no longer have to rely on Varguez’s department to be open for them to create and manage lectures. Instructors can record lectures from anywhere without the need to visit the CTE to record and process their videos. “This was a big win for us. It’s changed the way faculty plan, create and process lectures,” Varguez noted.
Instructors also appreciate the in-video quizzing and captioning YuJa’s Video Platform facilitates. Before, it was cumbersome and time consuming for teachers to record their videos and then type the accompanying transcript. “With YuJa, they don’t have to,” Varguez shared. “Some instructors like to have a script, but others speak better extemporaneously. Either way, YuJa can auto-caption and save them a lot of time.”
Use Case of the Video Platform Outside of the Traditional Classroom
“With YuJa, we can record a lecture with Zoom, edit with YuJa and share it with the entire faculty in case the missed the event or want to revisit a part of the discussion.”
The use of YuJa’s Video Platform extends beyond recording lectures. Several faculty have asked students to create and record presentations virtually, and students can add threads, share links and host virtual discussion boards.
In addition to providing services connected with the LMS, creating course shells, and assisting with creating and deploying courses, the Center for Teaching Excellence also is tasked with providing faculty with regular workshops and professional development events. “With YuJa, we can record a lecture with Zoom, edit with YuJa and share it with the entire faculty in case the missed the event or want to revisit a part of the discussion,” Varguez said, adding that with analytics, his department can see how many are viewing the videos.
“The YuJa team is always working on something amazing, and the more innovation they create, the more faculty will be sold on the product.”
The CTE also creates weekly 60-second videos to help faculty best use services the college offers. If there are a number of support tickets surrounding a topic, they’ll use YuJa’s Video Platform to create a quick video that addresses the concerns. “When we see instructors struggling, we create a video, put it in YuJa and share it very easily. It’s a nice way to create and distribute media efficiently,” Varguez stated.
An Exciting, Forward-Looking Partnership
Varguez predicted that the usage of YuJa Enterprise Video Platform will continue, even post pandemic when everyone is back on campus full time. Faculty, staff and students have grown familiar with the platform and see the benefit of having lectures recorded, even for those who may have been at the lecture in person. And Varguez expects that like it has over the past several years, YuJa will continue to innovate, increasing interactivity and overall effectiveness of the tools. “The YuJa team is always working on something amazing, and the more innovation they create, the more faculty will be sold on the product,” he concluded.