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Getting Started With Screencasting: A Tool to Supplement Classes, Answer Student Questions, and Provide Guided Analysis Practice.

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Tricks of the Trade II

Tagged Division

New Engineering Educators

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.640.1 - 23.640.10

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Paper Authors


Sean Moseley Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

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Sean Moseley is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering
at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. He received a B.S. from
The Georgia Institute of Technology and an M.S. and Ph.D. from
the University of California, Berkeley.

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Getting Started With Screencasting: A Tool to Supplement Classes, Answer Student Questions, and Provide Guided Analysis Practice.Introduction Learning how to effectively use technological tools in the classroom can present a verysteep learning curve to some instructors, especially those who are new to engineering education.Screencasting, the capture of a computer screen in video form, is such a technological tool that isbecoming increasingly popular among educators. One of the advantages of providing videoresources for students is that they tap in to student’s comfort with web videos and provide aresource that can be accessed at any time. This availability is likely to be appreciated not only bythe current generation of students, but also by non-traditional students who may not be able tocome to office hours due to their school-life balance. While screencasting videos hold much promise, finding the time to learn effective uses oftechnology can be a struggle. This paper will report on one educator’s initial experiences withscreencasting tools (Camtasia, Jing, Wacom tablets, and PDF Annotator) and provide some tipsand lessons learned for those interested in getting started in this area. The focus of the paper willbe on the various ways that these tools can support and reinforce (but not replace) regularclassroom instruction. Feedback from the author’s own experiences will be used to support theutility of these types of screencasts.Details First, an overview of the screencasting tools will be given. Jing (free screen capturesoftware) will be compared to Camtasia (the paid software from which Jing is based) with regardto features and usability. PDF Annotator will be discussed in combination with Wacom’s“interactive display” hardware. Low-cost or no-cost implementations will be discussed. With the software and hardware described, screencasts as a classroom supplement will bediscussed next. The use described here is to provide extra resources for inquisitive students or topresent a detailed solution to an in-class example problem when you find yourself running out oftime during class. In addition, content that is not fundamental to a course, but falls into thecategory of “interesting to students” might be best presented as an additional classroomsupplement. Then, screencasts as an effective method of answering student questions will bediscussed. When teaching a class that involves the use of software (such as a Solid Modelingclass), many student questions are difficult to answer over email. The author has found thatcreating a screencast to show common student problems along with their solutions can be avaluable resource for students. The advantage for the instructor comes when these screencastsare reused when the question is asked again (as many common student questions are). Finally, screencasts as a method of providing guided analysis practice will be discussed.In analysis-heavy classes (where the application of a few governing principles or equations makeup the bulk of the content), screencasts showing the instructor working all the way throughproblems can be a useful resource for students who need extra guidance. Different ways ofpresenting this guided analysis (as homework solutions, as extra practice problems, and to repeatthe analysis performed in class) will be discussed.

Moseley, S. (2013, June), Getting Started With Screencasting: A Tool to Supplement Classes, Answer Student Questions, and Provide Guided Analysis Practice. Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia.

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