Having the facility to stream and record live video is fast becoming an essential requirement for educational institutions, with the implementation of lecture capture technology offering a myriad of benefits for students and staff alike.

In recent years, the adoption of lecture capture solutions (LCS) by higher education organisations in particular, has enjoyed a steady growth, seen as the ideal solution for blended learning programmes and ‘flipped’ classroom environments, as well as offering a significant financial investment for the institution if a robust, secure and intuitive solution is selected.

The inevitability of going digital and the ability to capture lecture content and deliver it on demand to students predominantly via the internet and other networks, holds the key to transforming and modernising the educational process.

The arrival and growth of lecture capture has the potential to change everything for educators and students.

Many of today’s lecture capture solutions enable the end user to slice and dice recorded content into much more palatable and meaningful chunks, with these bite size pieces much easier for students to digest than a long lecture; delivering a more interactive learning experience.

However, as with any technology boom, there are many lecture capture solutions in the market, with varying quality and features available, making the decision on the most suitable and reliable one a daunting challenge. You must take into account the vision of the institution as well as faculty and student opinion as many can be costly to purchase as well as to install and maintain.

So what is the best solution?

When considering investing in a lecture capture solution, it is vital that the institution selects a technology that adheres to their own aims and objectives. There are certain specifications that a secure, feature rich and high quality solution should offer whilst remaining both cost and time effective.

Only after understanding the place of the LCS within the campus and the potential to utilise lecture capture in order to aid and improve learning is it possible to determine which technology to adopt and from where. One of the most important features when considering a lecture capture solution is whether it is capable of integration with other technologies.

When lecture capture was first introduced, the solution often provided nothing more than a means of recording lectures for later review. Now however, in order for a LCS to be a true education solution, integration into other technologies is vital.

Being able to integrate such a solution into existing infrastructure and video streaming solutions is also another factor, ensuring that recorded or streamed content can be accessed in the same way as live television and video assets and delivered to the same devices.

When looking for a lecture capture solution it is important to look at the bigger picture and contemplate which will add the most value to your institution; the features of a highly effective, future proof LCS should include:

  • IPTV and Video on Demand integration to provide seamless delivery of high quality IPTV content
  • Ability to show multiple camera feeds
  • Ability to record live video content i.e. lectures, seminars, workshops, training sessions
  • Integration with Digital Signage for advertising, recording of meetings and employee training purposes
  • Media portal integration to provide each student with a unique, customisable and user friendly interface
  • Ability to bookmark, store and archive content; in order to create useful video libraries for accessible viewing at a time that suits the user best
  • Integration into well-known Virtual Learning Environments (VLE’s) to provide modular, web based courses that support a modern pedagogy

Indeed lecture capture, when chosen appropriately, can benefit students in many ways. They can respond to changing trends in student needs regarding access to lecture materials as well as assist the repurposing of unique intellectual content, provide increased accessibility to rich learning materials and support the use of student e-portfolios.

Once the true value of anytime, anywhere becomes a necessity and massive open online classrooms (MOOC) gather even more momentum and favour amongst educators, there is no doubt that lecture capture will become an essential tool for the higher education sector.