Youtube: a necessarily untidy guide to evolving innovation

Educational Technology, Research and Innovation1 Comment

Computer screens

According to the RMIT College of Design and Social Context Program Annual Review data, Youtube is the second most used technology after the LMS. Until we get clarity about the turning on of Youtube accounts, should that ever occur, we find staff managing with various work-arounds in order for sensible use of Youtube to be enabled. Do not despair! As I have argued elsewhere, an online culture which seems outwardly messy may not at all be a bad thing.

Risk Management

The challenge is managing  the opportunities Youtube and Google enable. I suggest taking a common sense approach. Please note that the following are options and common activities rather than recommendations.

  1. The teacher create a non-RMIT gmail account with the course name and share the password details with 3-4 other staff. it’s best if only one person uses the account as Google doesn’t like multiple logins all over the place. Sharing the password reduces the risk of someone leaving causing a loss of content. This account will then have an attached Youtube Account.
  2. Create a place for original versions of videos in a shared file or Google drive folder, or on the Equella repository in the library, where it can be searched. With videos being easily editable in Youtube it is important to look after version control, while being able to take advantage of this wonderful feature.
  3. When the videos are uploaded to Youtube make sure the privacy is set to unlisted. This makes them viewable and not searchable. Should you wish to make your video public you may want to first consider the issues here.
  4. If you want a video to be strictly viewable only to those with RMIT accounts consider streaming it from your personal Google drive and embedding it where you would like it to be seen. Hint: take a screen grab of the video, place it in your content platform, and hyperlink the image to where it streams in drive. A bit clunky but more attractive than just a link. An example is here.
  5. If you create a G+ Page to which all the Youtube videos are then linked, staff can, via their personal Gmail accounts, access the videos. The trick is to give your RMIT Gmail account admin rights over the page to bring management of the page within the university account. You can then remove your private account. The result is an RMIT G+ Page with access to the Youtube videos.

The above have arisen out of grappling with how to manage a group of videos for a course or a school. There are advantages to having a central Gmail account and advantages in each individual having their own separate accounts. We are working with this issue in Fashion and Textiles on a number of current GLBD Express and Core projects. They have many videos but we cannot create playlists without all the videos being listed as public. As a simple initial workaround I have created this, which makes the links available to staff without having to list the videos as public, or give everyone the password. They can then make the videos available via links or access the embed code. There may be better ways of doing this which we hope to explore.

There are so many contexts at RMIT that what works in one area does not necessarily fit another. The great thing about Youtube and Google apps in education, is that they still enable us to thrive in creating great experiences, through a culture of workarounds, perhaps better termed “evolving innovation”

Other Guides we have created

This post on managing and editing videos in Youtube.

And this presentation from the Whatonearth project on getting started with Youtube.

and there are plenty of guides on…Youtube!

Photo credit: Duplication by Michael Cohglan, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 on Flickr


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