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Student-generated video: An Innovative approach to online assessment

Dave Hammons, the director of athletic training in the Department of Kinesiology, wanted to create an online course utilizing the expertise of Alan Russell, a professional athletic trainer in Dallas, Texas, and an alum of the Boise State program, that would prepare undergraduate students for graduate school levels of physical rehabilitation and musculoskeletal evaluation. But, how could Russell, in Texas, watch students, in Boise, demonstrate the techniques, assess their performance, and provide corrective feedback to them in a fully online environment?

A Solution: Student Self-recorded Videos

Russell came up with the solution of having the students record themselves as they perform and describe training techniques. The instructor views the videos and provides feedback. Hans Aagard, an instructional design consultant with Boise State eCampus, helped Hammons and Russell with this new approach that allows an instructor to track student improvement through their videos.

These assignments created an engaging and modern learning environment, which can be a challenge online, Russell said.

Tips for Successful Implementation

Russell has advice for others who may want to try this approach in their courses.

  • Give students practice using the technology. For example, while the video assignments started in week four of Russell’s 15-week course, students began practicing, by recording a video introducing themselves, in the first week. This allowed them to get to know each other and work through any technology issues.
  • Use a technology that students know, like YouTube, and record the files locally before uploading them to the platform. Sometimes unreliable internet connections caused problems recording directly to YouTube.
  • Grading video assignments can take a lot of time. To make the most use of his time during the grading process, Russell would quickly review all the content, then pick one or two exercises he felt were the most important for that set and evaluate those more intently. If students had trouble with those, he would check others more closely.

How-to Resources

A number of resources are available to faculty designing similar assignments.