Teachers should maintain presence through their own videos
In order to facilitate continued teacher presence in student learning, and to enhance engagement, it is important for teachers to create videos themselves where possible, rather than solely relying on videos from other sources, as this can impede student engagement and their understanding of the materials, as well as lead to students not watching them. Students reported feeling far more connected to their teacher when they could at least hear their teacher's voice in a video, and they felt that they understood the content of videos more, because their teacher was using the same instructional techniques that they use in the classroom.
Influences on student engagement (Bond, 2020b, p. 39)
Keep videos short, no longer than 7 minutes
Videos that are shorter were less likely to lead to disengagement, with the average suggested length being 5-7 minutes. Videos also need to be connected to the curriculum, with the number of videos and worksheets given per day/week kept to a minimum, so as not to overwhelm students. Students could also be encouraged to create their own videos for their peers. If using YouTube, consider embedding videos within a website or LMS, to eliminate distractions and make them more accessible.
Self-assessment quizzes are linked to increased engagement
Include questions, either as accompanying or embedded quizzes, or as guides for discussion in the next lesson/discussion forum/video, as students are more likely to successfully engage with the content. A recent meta-analysis of 114 studies also found that self-assessment quizzes positively affect learning outcomes.
Encourage collaborative learning
In order to facilitate group discussions, interaction and engagement, especially for students learning at home, collaborative technologies such as Google Docs and social media are encouraged. However, given child protection and GDPR laws, collaborative LMS (e.g. Edmodo or Class Dojo) that students need logins for, are always preferred. Twitter can be a great extra resource, as teachers and students can use unique hashtags for their own class (e.g. #MsBondYr3) to make conversations easily locatable.
Don't worry if you make a mistake in a video - just keep going!
Teachers often commented about being embarrassed to appear in their own videos, but students are used to seeing you teach every day! Students reported not caring about how their teacher looked or sounded - what was important to them was that you use a consistent instructional approach and just keep going if you make a mistake.
Blog Post References
Bond, M. (2020a). Facilitating student engagement through the flipped learning approach in K-12: A systematic review. Computers & Education. (151), 1–36.
Bond, M. (2020b). Facilitating student engagement through educational technology: Current research, practices and perspectives. Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg.
Melissa is an EPPI-Reviewer Support Officer at University College London and a PhD candidate. She worked for 10 years as a high school teacher in country South Australia, followed by three years as a Research Associate at the Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg, Germany.