Moving to online and blended learning

Today I started to record the ‘online’ lectures for the course NanoMagnetism that I taught offline for the last few year. I also decided to a major overhaul of the course by switching to another book. The all time favourite of mine “Magnetism in Condensed Matter” by Stephen Blundell. I will still use Mike Coey’s MMM but as reference not as learning material. I love book Mike, but it is not really written for an introductory course for condensed matter magnetism.

Screenshot of the movie playing as the students will see me, I like the fact that I can interact with gestures (see those hands). Directly see the PPT which I can write on via my wacom tablet (derivations please!) and the overview at the bottom of the screen so students can quickly skip to parts later on that need review for their exam.

In the image above a screenshot of the final student view, the platform is called Panopto and it allows for direct face and ppt visualisation. Moreover it allows student to change the speed of the video between 0.5 and 2.0x speed so I either sound like I am high on Helium or low on SF6. I really hope this ‘online’ platform will be appreciated by the students. There will be less interaction during the video’s but I hope more during the Q&A afterwards. Moreover, it will on the long term be more efficient for me and the students as everything can be studied, re-viewed and for me recorded separately and in multiple takes. Moreover, I hope I can keep the revision cycle going where the video’s can be optimised every year following the feedback from the students.

So all in all an exciting and fun new development for me, it however does take massive amounts of time, but gladly train the new generation of PhD students to work with me in the lab, it all startes here!

Please let me know your thoughts or experiences by responding to this post, I am happy to hear your thoughts, tips, tops, etc…!

PS: Yes I will re-record this video with a more sexy shirt and a better background i.e. not my cluttered attic ;)!

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