Video Creation

What is video creation? 

Video is the electronic transmission of moving images. Video creation tools make it easy to record video material for conveying information via sound and motion.

What is the purpose of creating video?

Video recording can be used to create engaging material to supplement e-learning courses. It can also be helpful in building an authentic virtual classroom setting through video tutorials or ‘lecture capture’.  Creations can further help create a sense of face-to-face interaction and strengthen the instructor-student relationship, which can be challenging in full online learning environments. Lastly, video may also be used to address accessibility concerns.

How to use video creation tools?

Various tools associated with video creation can help you accomplish different tasks. The first step in using a video creation tool, is identifying the right tool for the job. Table 1 provides an overview of various tools associated with video creation and distinguishes between the functions they serve.

Table 1

Overview of Associated Video Creation Tools

Screen capture Webcam recording Microphone audio recording Animation creation Video Editing Web hosting

Explain Everything






Tools such as Screencast-o-matic, Explain Everything, iMovie, and Camtasia serve, in slightly different ways, the purpose of recording and creating video. Tools such as YouTube and Vimeo support video editing and web hosting functions. Generally, video recording tools enable you to start creating a video production either by using the tool’s own recorder (e.g.e screen or webcam recorder) or by uploading audiovisual material. The tools then allow some functionality for editing your video production. Editing functions may include clipping and organizing material, adding additional audio (such as music or voice over), adding transitions and annotations. Typically, video productions can then be saved and/or exporting the video in a standard video format (i.e. mp4). Exported videos can then be uploaded and shared elsewhere such as on your OWL course site, or on a video hosting site such as YouTube.

Web hosting sites such as YouTube and Vimeo add an interactive element as students may be able to ask questions or chat with teaching assistants and other students through a discussion thread linked directly to the video upload itself.

Video Creation for Teaching and Learning

Guy et al. (2014) emphasize a few key best practices for teaching online through video:

  • shorter videos that are less than 7 minutes in length are more engaging
  • An informal talking-head videos (i.e. webcam recording) is more engaging than a ‘Voice over PowerPoint’ presentation
  • Khan-style tablet video annotations add value to videos (for an example, check out this Introduction to Grammar by Khan Academy)
  • Pre-recorded classroom lectures do not make for very engaging online videos because there is a lack of direct engagement between the instructor and the viewer

Tool Comparison

This tool comparison currently focuses on two video creation tools. These tools were selected for being low to no cost tools that are platform agnostic (i.e. not limited to a Mac or PC).

Tool Comparison

Screencast-o-matic Explain Everything
Functionality 2 stars 2 stars
Accessibility 2 stars 2 stars
Technical 1 star 1 star
Mobile 2 stars 1 star
Usage and Account Setup 2 stars 1star
Social Presence 1 star 2 stars
Instructor Presence 3 stars 2 stars
Cognitive Presence 3 stars 2 stars

All Tools

Related Information

Additional Tools and Resources

Guy, P. J., Kim, J., & Rubin, R. (2014). How video production affects student engagement: An empirical study of MOOC videos. Paper published in the Proceedings of the ACM conference on Learning @ scale, March 4-5, 2014, Atlanta, GA. DOI: 10.1145/2556325.2566239