Assessments in courses go beyond just essays and examinations. Several other forms of assessments such as portfolios, podcasts, sound bites and videos etc may be used by instructors in your courses. This guide will provide you with some important tips and suggestions that can be used when managing assessments involving videos.
- Instructors may allow you to prepare a short video and upload it to Moodle as a trial. This video maybe a short introduction on the main assessment or any other subject the instructor may deem relevant. The main purpose of this is so that you are able to experience the video recording, editing and uploading experience before venturing on the main task. If the instructor has not setup or allowed for test video preparations, request them to facilitate this.
- Ensure that you have a reliable and high-speed internet connection when either recording/editing videos online or when submitting the assignment to Moodle. If you do not have fast and reliable internet connection at home, use the internet connection at the UNSW campus. UniWide is the wireless network available for current students and can be accessed from a wide range of locations across the campus. Any wifi-enabled device that supports WPA wireless security can be used to connect to UniWide. To find out more details about the network visit the IT’s webpages here.
- After you have recorded the videos, you can use the free and open source Handbrake software to convert your videos to a standard web-optimised format, with default settings. This will help eliminate common issues such as:
Potential Issue 1: Videos have been created as an unusual file type or non-standard resolution. This can occasionally lead to videos being frozen during processing.
Potential Issue 2: You may be asked to upload the video files to media collection galleries in Moodle. These videos are stored in theBox and not Moodle and if these are large files, it can take a very long time to upload. Depending on the internet connection upload speed, this can cause the web browser to time out and the upload will fail. Even if the upload is successful, theBox then has to process the quality down to a web-optimised size for viewers to have a good experience. This means the advantages of uploading a high-quality video is lost, but also means the processing will take longer than normal.
- Converting a video to a web-optimised standard reduces the likelihood of a technical failure and can significantly reduce the time required to upload and process a video file. Note that the Handbrake software is a suggestion only and is neither owned or supported by UNSW. To find out more about the software, look for community support and/or download it directly from the website, please see: https://handbrake.fr.
Instructions to use Handbrake
- Install Handbrake to your device.
- Open Handbrake and click Open Source to select the video.
- Once the file is selected, check the following settings
Destination - This controls where the new file will be saved on your computer, change if needed.
Format - Select MP4 File.
Web optimized - Ensure this is ticked.
Video encoder - Ensure this is H.264 (x264)
- Click Start when ready.
Once the file is optimised, it can be uploaded to Moodle.