10 Awesome Tips For Using Videos In eLearning
Look, people enjoy learning from video.
If you need to learn something, where is the first place you go?
Most likely, isn’t the library. The answer? YouTube videos.
Free learning videos and online video-based courses have taken over as the preferred method of learning for new generations.
And it makes sense.
Video engages two senses, sight and hearing, providing for a deeper, multi-sensory learning experience compared to other formats. Plus, video can show examples of
But to be effective, eLearning videos have to be done well.
They have to be well-written,
But if you decide to take it on yourself, here are our nine tips for using videos in your eLearning course or program.
1. Write a killer script
Before you jump into filming and editing, you must make sure to write a quality script. When creating eLearning videos, preparation is 80% of creating a successful video.
Just as you would for
Draft an outline and fill in the gaps with language that speaks to your audience. Once you have your script written, read it out loud. Reading out loud smooths out the editing process and helps further refine your script.
2. Tell a story
Steal a tactic from the marketing playbook and tell a good story.
After all, humans love stories.
Brainstorm some ideas and develop a solid plot, theme, and 2-3 characters. For eLearning videos, you can keep
One example would be an eLearning video teaching how to operate equipment. The story would contain a character that runs through challenges. Maybe they use the wrong settings or don’t clean the equipment properly. Your eLearning video would show the implications of these issues, and how to resolve them moving forward.
This story-format helps your viewers understand exactly what needs to be done.
3. Keep your videos short
The most effective eLearning videos are often the shortest in length.
Learning by video in small chunks, also called microlearning, allows learners to easily absorb and remember learning objectives. With diminishing attention spans, microlearning videos allow for improved information processing and flexibility.
When your eLearning videos are short, your learners can access them anytime. This means during breaks, commutes, or anytime they need to find a quick point-of-reference.
We suggest keeping each eLearning video segment to under 5 minutes. eLearning videos that extend over 15 minutes can cause information overload and diminished comprehension.
4. Entertain your audience
We all love to be entertained.
And learners in the digital era expect entertainment in their eLearning program. They want to be captivated and immersed in the content. And most often, adding entertainment to your video is the best way to achieve that.
Integrating entertainment features such as humor or emotional storytelling are essential to keeping learners engaged. Think to yourself, “how can I surprise and delight my audience?”
Maybe a funny cat pops up in your video at random times. Maybe your main character makes jokes every once in
One word of caution: be careful with your entertainment selection. You certainly don’t want to go too far and lose the point of your eLearning video. Learning objectives are always the number one priority. But if you can add in a little surprise and delight, your learners will be overjoyed watching your videos.
5. Shoot a
high quality video
You don’t need a fancy expensive camera to create quality eLearning videos.
But you do need to make sure you have good lighting. That means using natural light if possible, avoiding harsh shadows, and paying attention to your background.
You can purchase a set of lights to help with this. But if you’re only creating a video every once in
Instead of holding the camera while you speak, use a simple tripod to film your video. This will help stabilize your footage and make for much more professional looking video.
6. Edit your videos ruthlessly
When explaining a complex skill, the last thing you want is a poorly edited video to get in the way of your learning experience.
Your eLearning video edits need to be smooth and flow together seamlessly.
If you’re editing on your own, make sure you watch a few YouTube tutorials to learn best practices. We use Adobe Premiere Pro to edit all of our videos. But if you’re on a budget, there are plenty of free video editing software available.
Video editing takes a long time. Often it can be the longest part of your eLearning video creation process. Expect to be patient and allocate plenty of time to make sure you get it right.
If you’re pressed for time, you can always hire a company to edit eLearning videos for you.
7. Use visuals of people performing skills
The benefit of using video is the visual learning component they provide.
By using simple, clean visuals of “how to” perform a task can be incredibly effective to help your learners develop skills.
Whether it’s using stock video
This tactic is the old notion of “show, not tell.” This style has worked for centuries and is a tried and true strategy for any quality eLearning experience.
8. Use music and sound effects
Using background music is a highly debated topic in the world of eLearning.
Some professionals call it distracting. Others say it helps deepen the learning experience.
Our opinion? We are for it.
Back to the entertainment
That being said, make sure your music choice matches your audience and learning content. Light instrumental music tends to work best.
Sound effects, such as a “pop” or “swish” sound during transitions, are another effective way to spice up your eLearning video. While these certainly aren’t necessary, they add to the entertainment factor and can help deepen retention.
9. Support your video with additional learning materials
While it is certainly an effective learning platform, learners need support to further enhance the learning experience.
Try pairing your learning videos with
Remember that applying knowledge in a practical sense is the ultimate way to learn. Make sure your videos are set up to support real-world situations.