Captions are now automatic on all new Kaltura media

New media content added to Kaltura MediaSpace will be automatically captioned, whether uploaded via the Langara MediaSpace website at https://mediaspace.langara.ca, or via My Tools > My Media in Brightspace. These captions are machine-generated and should be available within 30 minutes of uploading your file. All media, including screen recordings, file uploads, web recordings, and most YouTube imports, will have captions added when uploaded to Kaltura. These are closed captions that can be deactivated by the media owner and when available, toggled on and off by the viewer. Existing media—uploaded before October 18th, 2022—will not have captions automatically added but you can request captions for this media.

Keep in mind, machine-generated captions are only 85% accurate and will not meet the requirements of students with closed captioning accommodations. Students requiring an accommodation will contact Accessibility Services, who will inform you directly. If you have a student that requires closed captions, edit your captions to ensure they are 99% accurate or contact Langara’s Assistive Technologist to request assistance with human-edited closed captions. 

We developed a Closed Captions slideshow (below) to provide step-by-step instructions for all you need to know about captioning your media in Kaltura MediaSpace/My Media.

five cartoon figures underneath a cloud that reads Kaltura MediaSpace

De-clutter your Kaltura media

Spark joy in your life and win a prize

You may have heard of internationally-renowned tidying consultant Marie Kondo and her trademark KonMari method. The method is based on the idea that we could all benefit from a radical de-cluttering of our home and work spaces; get rid of anything that doesn’t spark joy in our lives or isn’t meaningful to us in some way. Who doesn’t like a good spring clean of their stuff but what has any of this got to do with Kaltura you might ask?

Well, digital de-cluttering seems to be all the rage these days. From deleting unused online accounts to tidying up documents and folders on computer hard drives, we are being urged to de-clutter our digital life in order to gain some control back and create more mental spaces that are meaningful to us. Furthermore, there is usually a cost (both environmental and financial) associated with storing digital files. Although the price of physical storage (hard drives and SSDs) has come down in recent years, cloud storage costs remain relatively high, particularly when it comes to large files such as video. And it is here that we in EdTech need your help.

What is Kaltura?

For those who don’t know, the platform we use to store and share video and audio files is called Kaltura. You can access the platform directly or share media files with your students via an integration in your Brightspace courses called My Media. For the past few years we have been part of a ‘shared service’ of BC post-secondary institutions who have stored Kaltura media at UBC without any extra costs for storage and bandwidth. This agreement recently came to an end and we now pay extra for storage and bandwidth over a set amount.

Why de-clutter my Kaltura Media?

Because it will spark joy in your life! Hopefully. What’s certain is that it will save us a substantial amount of money if we can cut down the number of large video/audio files currently stored on Kaltura’s servers.

How do I do it?

Simples! We’ve made a video to show you how to delete your Kaltura media. Before deleting though, make sure you have an archive back-up of your original video/audio file! You can download the original from Kaltura or if you already have the original you can store it on an internal or removable hard drive or on one of the numerous cloud services available.

What’s in it for me?

Other than the joy it will spark in your life and the kudos that you will earn from EdTech? Prizes! After de-cluttering your Kaltura media send an email to edtech@langara.ca with the subject Kaltura de-clutter and the number of videos/audio files you have deleted. We’ll enter you into a draw to win some great prizes including Amazon/Apple/Google gift cards and a copy of Marie Kondo’s book Joy at Work: Organizing your professional life. Closing date is Wednesday November 30.

Can you help me?

We can’t de-clutter your media for you but if you have any questions just ping an email to edtech@langara.ca or jump into our Zoom virtual support drop-in (8.30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. M-F). You can also read our Retention Policy for Kaltura media.

Spark your creativity!

There are many misconceptions about creativity. One is that it is the exclusive preserve of geniuses – think Mozart or Picasso. Another is that creativity is a genetic trait passed on within families (while partly true your environment still plays a major role in how creativity is expressed).  A third is that it is the domain of teachers and students in creative arts subjects. Forget encouraging creativity in Math, Business or Physics.

The good news: researchers from Durham University argue that we all possess “small c creativity,” that is, the kind of creativity that encourages us to “think differently” in social circumstances (including teaching) and find new ways of doing and thinking about things (Davies and Newton, 2018). Sir Ken Robinson goes further; paraphrasing Picasso he argues that the education system stifles the artist within all of us and one of our jobs as educators is to take risks in order to nurture and spark our creative capacities.

 

 

Thanks to Robinson and people like Andrew Churches (2008) who reformulated Bloom’s Taxonomy for the digital age, creativity is now seen as an essential 21st century set of skills alongside those of literacy, numeracy, critical thinking and collaboration. The ability to adapt and remix, make, publish, build and construct are considered valuable higher order skills in the classroom but also increasingly in the workplace. A 2014 Adobe study of over 1000 hiring managers found that 94% look for evidence of creativity in job applications. In the classroom both teachers and students are expected to demonstrate a degree of digital fluency when it comes to creative higher order skills. Students in particular are being encouraged to move beyond a consumer model of education and instead co-create their learning experiences while as educators we are being told we should provide opportunities for our students to demonstrate multiple means of action, expression and communication.

The Digital Media Creator (DMC) Program

In EdTech our response to the need for more more creativity in the classroom and online has been to offer a program of professional development which we call Digital Media Creator. There are six modules: one a month from September through to March, focusing on creative practices such as podcasting, video production, screencasting and using cartoons/comics in teaching. We also offer an intensive DMC ‘boot camp’ where we cover all six modules in one week around NID time in early May. Each session is 90 mins long with an additional 30 mins “stay and play.” We aim to create an informal, stimulating and supportive learning environment in which to develop your creative skills, and we help you to create digital artefacts that you can use in your teaching. While we encourage you to sign up for all six modules you can also sign up for them individually depending on your interests and skill levels if you wish. Spots fill up quickly so you need to move fast!

Register for the DMC here

DMC 2019

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

References:

Adobe (2014) ‘Study reveals students lack the necessary skills for success.’ https://blogs.adobe.com/education/2014/09/29/study-reveals-students-lack-the-necessary-skills-for-success/ (retrieved September 04, 2019)

Churches, Andrew (2008) Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/228381038_Bloom’s_Digital_Taxonomy (retrieved September 6, 2019)

Davies, Lucy M and Newton, Lynn (2018) ‘Creativity is a human quality that exists in every single one of us.’ https://theconversation.com/creativity-is-a-human-quality-that-exists-in-every-single-one-of-us-92053 (retrieved September 5, 2019)

The Vancouver Podcast Festival: Report

Photograph of panel at CBC live podcast 2050: Degrees of Change
The Panel at 2050: Degrees of Change (CBC live podcast)

The Vancouver Podcast Festival 

Karen Budra and Julian Prior attended the inaugural Vancouver Podcast Festival, sponsored by the Justice Institute, CBC and the VPL and presented by DOXA, between Thursday, Nov 8 and Saturday, November 10. We attended a number of panels, workshops, social events & live podcasts. Here are our takeaways: 

Purpose 

In the panel, Politics & Podcasting, Charlie Demers pointed out that podcasts “fulfill… the promise of the internet” as opposed to social platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, because podcasts are “more thoughtful.” This resonated with us, as one of the primary functions of academia is to encourage students to demonstrate deep learning and we would encourage faculty to learn how to use podcasts both to deliver course material and to provide students with another modality with which to express their ideas. 

Technology 

Most of the kit recommended by the senior sound CBC sound engineer, Cesil Fernandes in Sonic Sorcery: The Magic Tricks of Sound Design, such as the Zoom, Shure and Sennheiser microphones and portable recorders, are already available through EdTech or AVIT. Additionally, of course, smartphones (with or without attached microphones) can be used as a “safe” adjunct, should another recording device fail. 

EdTech also has an insulated studio in which to record audio, available to be booked by Langara faculty. 

Networking 

In the course of the three days, we met a variety of people from a variety of backgrounds, including Johanna Wagstaff, Lisa Kristiansen, Ian Hanomansing, & other CBC luminaries; well-established podcasters Karina Longworth and Helen Zalzberg; neophyte podcasters and students. 

These connections were both informative and inspiring, especially as one of the CBC producers is the parent of one of Karen’s current students and was able to talk knowledgably about Langara. We also spent time with two recent UBC film grads who run a podcast and learned much about how they set it up and the best way to deliver podcasts to students. More importantly, we learned how they created this student podcast and gained valuable insight into how we might support Langara instructors to help their students establish one based on this model. One of the great strengths of podcasts as a learning tool is that they can be delivered directly to students’ mobile devices, allowing them to study on the move.

Introducing MediaSpace: Langara’s Streaming Video Platform

All faculty and students now have access to MediaSpace (by Kaltura), a YouTube-like video portal that lets you create, upload and share video and audio. Amongst other things, you can use MediaSpace to create video lectures, curate playlists of existing content from YouTube, or provide an online space for students to upload coursework or video/audio assignments.  

By default all content you upload to MediaSpace is private and can only be viewed by you. You can choose to share content with others, or make it public. Video and audio files are stored in the cloud on secure servers at UBC and content can easily be embedded in Brightspace or iWeb/Courseweb.  

We know that our students expect us to provide them with an inclusive, engaging and accessible learning environment in order to maximize their chances of academic success. MediaSpace is an important piece of the puzzle in that respect. The platform enables instructors to easily incorporate video in face-to-face classroom teaching, or in a mixed-mode or fully online course. We are excited about new features such as interactive quizzing and closed captioning, and look forward to working with you to make the most of MediaSpace in your teaching. 

MediaSpace can be accessed by all Langara staff and students at https://mediaspace.langara.ca You will need to login using your Langara Computer User ID and Password in order to upload content to your MyMedia (your personal MediaSpace library of video/audio content). 

To learn more about MediaSpace and how you and your students can use it, come along to our Information Session on Wednesday September 27, 12:30-13:30 in L342.  

You can sign up for this session here

Do more with video: Four great features of the new Kaltura

Kaltura (Langara’s multimedia streaming platform) is about to be upgraded. As well as continuing to provide an easily accessible way for instructors and students to upload video and audio content to D2L courses, Kaltura is introducing a number of new features. Here we highlight four that we are excited about – and we hope you will be too.

1. Kaltura MediaSpace

It has always been possible to upload videos to Kaltura in D2L. However, instructors have been asking us for a while whether there is a more user-friendly and visually appealing way to search, watch, upload and share their videos. Kaltura MediaSpace will bring a YouTube-like video portal to Langara with granular user controls over the management of videos, screencasts, audio and other content, including student content. All data is stored in Canada on UBC’s servers and all content uploaded to MediaSpace is private by default.

MediaSpace at Michigan State U

2. Closed Captioning

The Canadian Association of the Deaf have long advocated for the high quality captioning of all video for accessibility purposes. Closed captions in Kaltura are not a new feature – they have been available for a while. The upgraded version enables all users to upload SRT and other closed caption files rather than have Ed Tech do this for you. We are also currently evaluating the use of external video captioning services that integrate with Kaltura.

3. CaptureSpace

At Langara ‘Video Screen Capture’ (i.e Screencasting) is very popular with instructors who use it for a variety of purposes – whether that be providing audio and visual feedback on papers to students in the LEAP program, assisting a flipped classroom model or creating software walk-throughs. Up to now we have recommended and supported instructors in the use of a tool called Screencast-o-matic that we subscribe to for creating video screen captures. The upgraded version of Kaltura brings a new application called CaptureSpace that will be available to download for Windows and Mac computers. CaptureSpace allows you to capture your screen, screen and webcam, webcam only or voice. It also integrates nicely with Microsoft Powerpoint so allows instructors (and students) to easily create slides with narration.

Quizzing in Kaltura

4. Interactive Video Quizzing

Have we saved the best until last? The interactive video quizzing feature in the new Kaltura enables the embedding of multi-choice questions at any point in a video. This is a great way to improve engagement, interactivity and assess understanding. This feature will be available later in the year.

For more information on the Kaltura upgrade please contact Julian, Heidi or Ari in Ed Tech (edtech@langara.ca).