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Apr 2012

Teaching With Subtitled Educational Video

Teaching and Providing Equal Access in the Classroom

With up to 94% of teachers now using educational videos in the classroom as a valued teaching resource, it is interesting to see that many teachers use online educational video that only benefits some of their students and not all.

Video produced and originally intended for television distribution, and video of conference presentations is not video that is going to be particularly effective for teaching K-12 curriculum subjects. Content used to effective deliver curriculum should be developed specifically for that purpose. But yet many teachers are attempting to use that type of video because that is all they believe is available.

But there is much more to it that this. If teaching with educational video is to be effective, it must provide access for all students in the classroom, and not just some.

The soundtrack must be specially prepared so as to be able to provide that content to the blind student or the child with visual impairments.

The video should now by Federal Law, include the use of subtitles, otherwise known as closed captions. This of course provides for the deaf student, or those children with hearing impairments.

Those subtitles should be provided using enlarged fonts that are easy to read, again for those students that have mild visual impairment.

And then there is the need to provide for different Learning styles. By providing video with both specially prepared sound tracks and subtitles positioned in a dedicated position at the bottom of the video, we provide each child with the choice of watching, listening to, or reading each presentation, and in doing so we are provide for the widest range of Learning Styles.

And then there is the real bonus for the teacher and school alike. Much successful research over the last 30 years has demonstrated the link between the use of video subtitles and improved reading and literacy skills. By providing the use of those subtitles on video developed specifically for the purpose of teaching the k-12 curriculum, we enable each child to study that curriculum content AND develop and improve their reading and literacy skills at the same time.

However educational video alone does not provide a complete teaching solution. The provision of interactive study tools enable the child to thoroughly study that topic, and investigate parts of the topic that require additional attention.

The provision of a Lesson Plan for the teacher then enables them to effectively combine the use of that video with other specific activities to reinforce the learning of that topic.

Then finally, the provision of interactive quizzes developed to explain why each answer is correct or incorrect, ensures that the multiple choice questions focus specifically on the content in that video.

When you review these essential features required for that video to be used for educational purposes, you begin to understand that 90% of the free video available online currently, is simply an ineffective teaching resource. And it does not provide equal access for all students in the classroom.

A recent survey of the main online educational video services provides a valuable overview of what exactly those online services are providing, and which essential features are being ignored. The results of this Survey can be viewed on comparison charts provided on this page.

With this information teachers can make an informed decision about which educational videos are most beneficial for their students, and which are not.

For more information about the educational video service that Zane Education provides for teachers please see Zane’s Teachers page, and which online educational video service is best for use in schools please refer to Zane’s School page.

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