About Lecture Recording

14608What is lecture recording?

MyEcho is the University of Sheffield’s lecture recording system.

This records the lecturer’s computer screen (e.g. for PowerPoint slides), audio and, where available, optional video of the presenter. Once material is recorded, edited (where necessary) and published, this will be hosted on the MyEcho server, and a link automatically created which can be shared with students.


Why record lectures?

Recording lectures can be beneficial to students in a number of ways:

  • It allows for revision of lectures by students.
  • It makes lectures more accessible for students with disabilities, including those with specific learning difficulties, and students with English as a second language.
  • It allows absent students to catch up with lectures they have missed.
  • It allows individual lectures to be shared among several cohorts, or to groups too large to fit into a lecture theatre.
  • It allows lectures to be made available publicly, or simply saved for posterity.

As well as recording existing lectures, these tools can also be used to record other learning materials, including media for use in ‘Flipped Classrooms’. This is where lecturers record expositional material that students are tasked to watch online before sessions, so these can be used in more interactive and discussion-based ways, increasing the learning value of face-to-face sessions.

Some lecturers are wary that recording lectures will have an adverse effect on lecture attendance, but studies have shown no clear correlation. It is also important to note recording does not act as a replacement for the lecture experience, as students watching the recording will not be able to ask questions or engage in group activities, or see or hear any important multimedia material that has been unable to be included in the published recording for copyright reasons.

How are lectures recorded?

MyEcho allows lectures and presentations to be recorded in two ways:

  • Lecture Recording – Scheduled recording of timetabled lectures, in lecture theatres that have the MyEcho hardware and software installed.
  • Desktop Recording with Echo360 Personal Capture – Ad hoc recording of lectures and presentations, on software downloaded to the your personal computer.

For details how to arrange recordings, including which lecture theatres are lecture capture ready, and information on using the MyEcho personal capture service, see the CiCS MyEcho pages.

Other ways of recording materials

The following software is also available to create screencasts (a recording of the actions on a computer screen, including optional audio and video).

  • Camtasia Studio – A powerful, professional-level screencasting package available for Mac and PC (Mac version available in the Creative Media facilities).
  • Quicktime Player – A quick and easy way to record your screen with voiceover (Mac only).
  • Screenr and Screencast-o-Matic – Browser-based software for recording short screencasts on the fly.
  • Explain Everything – A slide-recording app for iPad.

Guides to some of this software, and details how to book the Creative Media Facilities, can be found at the CiCS Creative Media pages.