The Community of Inquiry framework (Athabasca University, 2016; Garrison, Anderson & Archer, 2001) tells us that we need to facilitate three key "presences" in order to set up an effective online learning experience:
- Social Presence -- Connections between learners.
- Teacher Presence -- Connections with the instructor (and the instructor's presence, guiding and facilitating the learning process).
- Cognitive Presence -- Connections with the learning content and activities.
Greet Them at the Door!
Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Instructor Welcome Video
Avoiding course specifics in your Instructor Welcome Video has an added practical benefit for you -- it increases your Return on Investment for the time spent on creating your video. If the video is a personal greeting, and not about a specific course, then you can use it in more than one online course! And, that brings me to my second big tip -- try to avoid saying things in your video that will immediately or quickly date it. Avoid saying things like "I'm currently pursuing...." Instead, say something like "In 201x I began...." That way, you don't need to redo your video as soon as things change (which means you also don't need to hunt down every place you've shared the video, and update the link to the new version).
I used the free version of PowToon to create my Instructor Welcome video. But, there are plenty of other free video creation applications that you could use (and some awesome paid ones, as well).
- Using YouTube to Share Video in an Online Course (my blog post with tips on how to work with YouTube as an online instructor).
- How to Make Your YouTube Videos Interactive (Byrne, 2017)
- 6 Steps For Making An Engaging eLearning Promo Video For Your Course (Michael, 2017)
Byrne, R. (2017, February 6). How to Make Your YouTube Videos Interactive [Web log Post]. Free Technology for Teachers. Available from http://www.freetech4teachers.com/2017/02/how-to-make-your-youtube-videos.html#.WJodp2IrKUk
Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical inquiry in a text-based environment: Computer conferencing in higher education model. The Internet and Higher Education, 2(2-3), 87-105. Available from http://cde.athabascau.ca/coi_site/documents/Garrison_Anderson_Archer_Critical_Inquiry_model.pdf
Michael, A. (2017, February 5). 6 Steps For Making An Engaging eLearning Promo Video For Your Course [Web log Post]. eLearning Industry. Available from https://elearningindustry.com/6-steps-making-engaging-elearning-promo-video-course
Pacansky-Brock, M. (2015, June 2). Instructor Presence: The Secret Sauce. [YouTube video]. Available from https://youtu.be/P8S1aOA8HkE
Power, R. (2018, September 12). Hi There! Meet Rob Power. [YouTube video]. Available from https://youtu.be/nC5AmaFws34
PowToon (2017). Available from https://www.powtoon.com/
Reed, D. (2016, August 20). Welcome to the 4th Grade. [YouTube video]. Available from https://youtu.be/XBLcuGunRxU
Slade, Tim (2017, January 17). 100+ Free Hero Images for eLearning. [Web log post]. Available from https://timslade.com/blog/hero-images-for-elearning/