Drastically Reduce the Size of Your Training by Offloading Video

It’s common sense that courses can run more smoothly when they’re not packed with heavy content, but is there a way to retain all of your rich media—like videos—without straining the course? As it turns out, you can offload all of your videos onto YouTube and insert the embed codes into your courses. What this essentially does is put the weight and strain of your videos in YouTube’s very capable hands. They take care of the video hosting and processing; the course will merely be reflecting that hosted content, which in turn will drastically reduce the file size of your course.

The following is a simple method for hosting your video content on YouTube and embedding it into your training.

What you will need:

  • A Google Account
  • A video file to upload (a list of YouTube’s supported video formats can be found here)
  • A stable Internet connection

In order to upload a video to YouTube, you will need to create a Google Account if you don’t already have one. To do this, visit this link and fill out the form.

Then, go to www.youtube.com and log into your Google Account using the Sign in button in the upper right-hand corner (Note: if you’ve just created a Google Account and are visiting this page, you may already be signed into your account, in which case you can skip this step):






After entering your credentials, you should be redirected back to the main page (same as the one pictured above). Next, click the Upload button:





On this screen, drag and drop the video you want to upload onto the indicated field:





This will initiate the uploading process:





Note that you can also change the video’s privacy settings on this screen. If you don’t want the video to be public, you should select “Unlisted” so that only people with the video link can view it. Selecting “Private” may seem like the best option, but doing this will mean that you have to grant permission to each person who wants to view the video, so it can end up being an onerous process and is thus not recommended:





Once the video has finished uploading, there will be a link to where you can find the video on YouTube:




Click this link to be taken to your video. Next, click the “Share” tab below the video:






Now click the Embed tab that appears:






You will probably want to uncheck the “Show suggested videos when the video finishes” box. This option is unnecessary and could potentially distract the audience from the course:





Here, you can also adjust the video size to preset dimensions or select your own custom size:





After making all of your desired changes, you are now ready to copy the embed code and paste it into your course:





The result should be a neatly embedded YouTube video.


Please note that in order for the embed code to be parsed properly in Lectora, you will need to type http: after src=”. This fix may also apply to other e-Learning tools that are unable to render the video.

Thoughts on the State of Mobile Learning

In 2011, Abilene Christian University held a Connected Summit, where various experts in the fields of business, education, and technology came together to share ideas about the current state of technology and where it’s headed. Below are some of the conclusions I drew after watching this video, which covered the highlights of the Connected Summit.

Teachers should use technology that students already have

I think Abdul Chohan made an excellent point about how teachers should utilize the technologies that students already have with them in their pockets. It reminded me of an article I read recently called Adolescents’ Engagement with Web 2.0 and Social Media: Research, Theory, and Practice. The authors talk about something called “turn-around pedagogies,” which involves “the kind of curriculum- and people-work required for connecting Web 2.0 and social media to adolescents’ academic literacies” (Alvermann 34). They expressly encourage teachers to focus on incorporating tools in the curriculum that address students’ preexisting technological interests—such as videos, podcasts, or personal web pages—and for the teachers themselves to become acquainted with these technologies.

Students should learn to reflect critically on their media usage

However, the authors go a step further and insist that teachers give their students “critical media literacy skills,” which include such tasks as reflecting on the pleasures derived from popular media, analyzing how popular media texts shape and are shaped by youth culture, and mapping the ways in which individuals assimilate popular culture texts differently. According to the authors, these are skills which students “are not likely to develop on their own” (35). They contend that this a process that should be facilitated by educators, but that “there is scant evidence that critical digital literacy instruction is keeping pace” (35). So, while I would say it is important to get students to use the technologies with which they’re already familiar in an educationally engaging and constructive way, I think it’s even more important for teachers to put the necessary checks in place to ensure that students are developing the skills to reflect on and assess the merits of their technological exercises.

Technology should be the supplement, not the focus

I also thought Billie McConnell of ACU also made a great point about how technology shouldn’t be the focus of the classroom; that is the place of the curriculum. The technology should merely be there to support the curriculum, perhaps by enabling students to perform tasks and accomplish goals in a more efficient way. If you have a poorly designed curriculum, it doesn’t matter how neat your technology is; the course will ultimately be a flop because it lacks actual substance.

Why don’t more students have educational apps on their devices?

Robbie Melton of the Tennessee Board of Regents raised a very thought-provoking question. She remarks that while smartphones and tablets are filled with devices that are great for socializing, finding out how to get from point A to point B, and so on, that there are no notable apps that encourage the learning of math, English, and other school subjects in a dynamic, engaging way. I don’t know if I can agree with that statement entirely, since language-learning apps like Duolingo have really taken off over the past couple of years, but I do see her point about how such educational apps don’t really have a presence on most peoples’ smart devices. What do you think the reason for this is? Are learning apps “just not cool?” Is there something about them that turns kids off? What does it take for an educational app to appeal to their demographic?

What were some of your takeaways from this video? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.