About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2707-2712
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-617-5895-1
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2016.1585

Conference name: 9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 14-16 November, 2016
Location: Seville, Spain

WHEN LESS IS MORE: PDF TUTORIALS IN A VIDEO-BASED COURSE

H. McCune Bruhn

Penn State University (UNITED STATES)
Online courses can be intimidating. Even with standardized course management systems and websites that adhere to common design standards, each course has its own particular philosophy and structure. Most online courses at Penn State University begin with an orientation. In this author’s two online art history courses, the orientation lessons are designed to imitate the regular course lessons. Students thus familiarize themselves with the structure and procedures of the course from the very start. Video tutorials and written step-by-step instructions guide students through the course design and navigation, lesson and assessment structure, and the procedures required to utilize certain course-specific tools like our online image database. Although these tutorials are intended to minimize confusion, between 10 and 15% of a typical enrollment of 150 to 200 students every semester fail to fully implement the steps outlined in these tutorials. This results in back-and-forth problem solving email conversations that take up valuable student and instructor time. ARTstor, a subscription image database, accounts for the majority of confused student emails. In order to download study images for each lesson, students must first access ARTstor through the Penn State Libraries website, register as a Penn State user with a unique ID and password, unlock a password-protected folder for our course, and navigate to the proper view of the study images. In summer 2015, a step-by-step visual tutorial was implemented to walk students through this process. The tutorial was created using screen shots from the Penn State Libraries and ARTstor websites, and modified using graphic images and minimal text in PowerPoint. Each PowerPoint slide illustrated a single procedural step, with arrows indicating where to click and additional text when necessary. The PowerPoint was then published as a PDF file and provided to students as part of their orientation materials. The result was a marked drop in confused student email, and faster student completion of the orientation lesson. This paper will explore the pros and cons of various types of orientation tutorials: text-based, video-based, and the PDF-based visual tutorial, examining the ways in which each tutorial format can be most effectively applied. Furthermore, this paper will address cases in which multiple formats can be utilized to reach students with differing learning styles. Even in video-heavy courses like the online art history surveys, it is possible to have better results using simpler, lower-bandwidth tutorials.
@InProceedings{MCCUNEBRUHN2016WHE,
author = {McCune Bruhn, H.},
title = {WHEN LESS IS MORE: PDF TUTORIALS IN A VIDEO-BASED COURSE},
series = {9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2016 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-5895-1},
issn = {2340-1095},
doi = {10.21125/iceri.2016.1585},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/iceri.2016.1585},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Seville, Spain},
month = {14-16 November, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {2707-2712}}
TY - CONF
AU - H. McCune Bruhn
TI - WHEN LESS IS MORE: PDF TUTORIALS IN A VIDEO-BASED COURSE
SN - 978-84-617-5895-1/2340-1095
DO - 10.21125/iceri.2016.1585
PY - 2016
Y1 - 14-16 November, 2016
CI - Seville, Spain
JO - 9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2016 Proceedings
SP - 2707
EP - 2712
ER -
H. McCune Bruhn (2016) WHEN LESS IS MORE: PDF TUTORIALS IN A VIDEO-BASED COURSE, ICERI2016 Proceedings, pp. 2707-2712.
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