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Using Streaming Media for Online User Training in IT. John Fritz Bill Shewbridge University of Maryland, Baltimore County EDUCAUSE, December 4, 2001. Overview. UMBC Background Basics of the Production Process UMBC Examples Lessons Learned Presentation And Contact Information.

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Using streaming media for online user training in it l.jpg

Using Streaming Media for Online User Training in IT

John Fritz

Bill Shewbridge

University of Maryland, Baltimore County

EDUCAUSE, December 4, 2001

Overview l.jpg

  • UMBC Background

  • Basics of the Production Process

  • UMBC Examples

  • Lessons Learned

  • Presentation And Contact Information

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Institutional Drivers for Using Technology at UMBC

  • Faculty

    • By and large, about 75% of our faculty are comfortable with basic technology (email/web) and exploring various stages of how technology can be used to improve learning.

  • Assured Access to Computing Initiative

    • Focusing on providing all students with access to technology.

    • Student expectations: they are beginning to expect and request courses to utilize technology.

  • Institutional Support

    • FaCT program was successful in getting faculty started.

    • OIT and the Faculty Development Center provide joint faculty training sessions and brownbag workshops

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Classifying Technology Usage

  • Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL)

    • Technology augments in-class learning with the focus on providing course information and additional online resources.This represents the bulk of our current faculty usage

  • Online Courses

    • Technology provides the means of running the course and a full complement of course information.

  • Hybrid Courses

    • Course meets in-class and online. In-class sessions are reduced and the class meets online for discussions, group work and assessment.

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Fall 2001 Instructional Technology Activities

  • Computer classrooms – 84 courses

    • OIT labs support 84 classes using technology enabled classrooms

    • Reached saturation 3 years ago and have worked with Physics, GES, and English to create departmental facilities

  • Blackboard – 234 courses with 6,436 distinct students

    • Usage is predominately in the social sciences and humanities

    • Doubled student enrollments each of the past 3 years

    • Expanding into organizational support areas (Delta Initiative, Faculty Senate, Student Affairs)

  • Faculty-developed course web pages

    • Usage is predominately in the sciences

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Why Online IT Training?

  • Support crunch necessitated a more scalable approach

  • Video on demand is more customizable by the end user

  • Availability of a robust, broadband infrastructure (e.g., IPTV, Internet2)

  • We could train users on UMBC specific IT issues they couldn’t find elsewhere:

    • Publishing web pages @ UMBC

    • Using the campus portal myUMBC

    • Creating and managing your user account

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First Efforts

  • Broadband Video for Training

    • MPEG1 and IPTV

    • Example:

      • PowerPoint in the Classroom

      • ResNet Installation

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Content expert


Organization and efficiency of material and resources

Allocating resources

Multimedia integration issues









Multimedia Integration


Production Process Basics

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Lessons Learned and Refocus

  • Limits of MPEG for screen capture

    • FINWeb MPEG

    • FINWeb Screen Captures

  • Recognition that multiple solutions are needed

  • Criteria for media selection

    • Quality of delivery

    • User Accessibility

    • Production Issues

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Quality of Delivery

  • Resolution

  • Motion

  • Sound

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User Accessibility

  • What does the user need to setup to use.

  • On demand issues: when does the user access it.

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Production Issues

  • Time

  • Resources

  • Expertise

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Streaming at UMBC


  • Screen Capture (FINWeb)

  • QuickTime w/ PowerPoint

Summary l.jpg

  • Learning computer applications means looking at computer screens, but doing so through online video is difficult.

  • Producing “compelling” content that could substitute for face-to-face training requires more time and planning than one might think. Are we trading a support crunch for a production crunch? Who develops the content?

  • Takes time to change user expectations and support culture. If we can’t meet everyone’s needs, how can they adapt so they can meet their own?

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[email protected]

[email protected]

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University of Maryland, Baltimore County

  • Technology Focus

  • Technology literacy

  • Assured Access

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New Media Learning and Development

  • Classroom Training

  • Automated “just-in-time” skills training

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TV’s influence on user expectations

  • Video is relatively easy to produce now and mere inclusion is sufficient.

  • The standards will rise to meet the level of expectation of a TV viewing audience.

  • As producers incorporate more they will want to expand their capabilities.

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Use Video for What it Does Best

  • See places, people and things otherwise unavailable.

    • Historical Documentary

    • Travelogue

    • Live Events

  • Expresses emotional content

    • Drama

    • Personal Service Training

  • Visualizes actions.

    • Resnet

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Is video the right option?

  • Video will require an increase in resource commitment to a production, although stages of the production process are the same.

  • It will be a process and resource-intensive product that will call for greater efficiency time and money.