Thursday, August 12, 2010

Using Camtasia

A key aspect to this part of the course is for students to have knowledge of Fidelio (a property management/reservation system used in hotels). At present the face to face students have access to the programme on campus and the distance students have had access to the programme at their host institution. With the use of a manual students are able to work their way through the system, however, I wanted to be able to provide students with some visuals of how to make a reservation, add traces, profiles and routing instructions (as a start – more will be added later!).

Camtasia Studio is a screen video capture programme that is published by TechSmith. The programme allows the user to define the area of the screen or window that is to be captured. As well as capturing the visual information you can record instructions that go with the material.

I know that there are different tools available to do this, such as Adobe eLearning Suite, however I had access to Camtasia through my workplace and I had attended an hour workshop on the use of Camtasia a couple of years ago. The brief notes I made back then, plus the easy format of Camtasia have made it a very simple programme to use.

Having seen the results, I have wondered why I have not used it more in my teaching, but certainly see the benefits of using it, especially with more flexible and blended delivery methods in the future.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

PowerPoints & iSpring

A little time has passed since my last post, however, that does not mean that I have been idle! The time has been used to progress with the resources that are being used to engage students with their learning.

I understand that students do not want ‘death by PowerPoint’ in any situation (face to face, distance or blended learning) – however, in saying that I think there is often a time and place to be able to provide some information on PowerPoint’s, along with narration.

Under reservations I have three PowerPoint slides that explain a booking (contract), the traditional guest cycle and the reservation process.

I have created this using PowerPoint and have used the PowerPoint narration tool. This is a simple way to create slides and narration and there is no use for other software. Some of the pitfalls of using this narration tool in comparison to Audacity would be that you are unable to edit the narration, if you make a mistake, you have to start again.

To package the PowerPoint I have used the free version of iSpring. Again this has been very easy to use and follow and creates a Shockwave File of the PowerPoint that was then inserted into my eXe package.