Embedding video in a Desire2Learn course

Often I find it desireable to include a video from the Internet into a course I’m teaching. Thanks to the new Web 2.0 technologies, it is possible to provide high quality videos direct to our students without needing to do a lot of production work ourselves. And the way many videos are being published on the Internet, we don’t even need to ask permission or get copyright clearance!

The trick is to look for online videos that have some kind of “Share” button or link mounted on or near the video panel. With that button you can copy a short line of computer code that you simply paste into your web page (in Desire2Learn or other learning management system, into your blog, into a PowerPoint presentation or wherever). Then each time the Play button is clicked by a student, the video actually streams from the server you found it on, in real time. No need to copy the video or otherwise handle it — it simply comes to your site each time it’s viewed.

In this short video, one of our colleages shows us how to accomplish this easy task. Go on and try it. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised how easy it is.

An important side note: We have discovered that, at the time of this writing, this process will not work correctly if you are using the Internet Explorer browser. For the time being it will be best to use the Firefox browser, which you can download for free at www.firefox.com.

Join the Desire2Learn Community

Desire2Learn has a very active user community that is accessible by all ORU faculty and staff. There is lots of information about new product initiatives, extensive discussion groups by hundreds of other people using Desire2Learn, and loads of documentation. You just need to go to the site and request a login, using your ORU email address. They will verify your eligibility and send login information, usually within 24 hours and often within the same day.

Check out http://community.desire2learn.com to get your account set up.

Overview of Desire2Learn at ORU (video, 40 minutes)

Some of you that are new to Desire2Learn might like to see a presentation I gave in November of 2006 to group of ORU faculty during an introductory session. In it I tell a little about the history of our acquisition of D2L and give a very brief overview of some the activities you might want to consider it for your online classroom.

By the way, this presentation was created using a software product called Camtasia Studio, a video screen capture utility that a log of us are starting to standardize on for creating multimedia content for our courses.

Click here to view the 40 minute presentation.