Classroom Recording

The University is trialling a classroom recording service during sessions 2018/19 and 2019/20 using the Panopto platform. Panopto allows for the simultaneous capture of audio, video, and desktop applications such as PowerPoint. The existing Camtasia Relay service is still available to all staff as a ‘light’ recording service, with Panopto providing a wider range of functions suited to a full classroom recording service.

Where can I use Panopto?

Panopto can be used in any teaching room and there are portable recording kits are available to collect from campus Library Help desks using this Unidesk form. The following classrooms and lecture theatres are undergoing a refit of lecterns, data projectors, document cameras, as well as fixed cameras and microphones required for recording purposes. The refit is taking place on a rolling basis with classrooms becoming ready during trimester 3.

  • Craiglockhart classrooms 1/06, 1/10, 2/06, 2/10, 3/11, and Lindsay Stewart and Riady lecture theatres
  • Merchiston classrooms F10, F11, F12, G2, H5
  • Sighthill classrooms: 2.D.04, 2.D.05, 2.D.14, 3.D.04, 3.D.14 and lecture theatres 1.D.02, 1.D.04/05.

Panopto is also available on any staff computer and can be downloaded on to staff owned computers.

How do I inform students?

Students must be advised if the class is being recorded and that their voice may be recorded if in proximity to the microphone. Additionally, portable cameras must be positioned so that student images are not captured. Students must also be advised of their rights to have their voice excluded from the recording, and so the following information for students can be copied into an opening PowerPoint slide and adapted as required;

  • This recording is part of a PILOT and so not all lectures will be recorded.
  • Purpose of the recording (eg. for your review or for reuse with distance learners)
  • What is being recorded (eg. presentation slides, lecturer’s audio and video)
  • When available (eg. within 5 days after review or editing)
  • Where to access (eg. in the Moodle module)
  • Downloading and sharing the recording is not permitted.
  • If you do not wish your voice to be recorded then inform the lecturer
  • Lecture Capture student guidelines

You have the ability to pause and resume recordings so that student contributions can to be made to the lecture without being recorded. The recording can be edited to remove sections before being made available to students.

What are the benefits for students?

When students adopt the two approaches that maximise the educational impact of classroom recordings then a wide range of benefits can be realised. Firstly, attending the lecture and viewing the recording as soon as possible after it has been made available ensures that key frames of reference are maintained. Secondly, focussing on specific sections of the recording rather than replaying the whole recording ensures that their time is used to good effect. The benefits of classroom recordings are well established in the sector as being an inclusive approach to curriculum support and which include the following,

  • allows students to revisit complex material that is difficult to understand, and at their own pace
  • students who do not speak English fluently can rewatch recordings and even slow down sections
  • supports effective note taking after the lecture allowing students to ‘write what they think’ rather than what is said by the lecturer
  • aids the revision process and preparation for exams.
  • access for distance learning students helps with a sense of belonging to the learning community
  • catching up on lectures missed due to illness and other personal issues

This page on MyNapier provides a briefing for students on how they can maximise the educational impact of classroom recordings.

What is the impact on academic staff?

Evidence from the sector report benefits for staff who embrace classroom recordings within their teaching practice, and these include,

  • access to reports that identify which students viewed your recordings, and the specific areas students spending most time which is suggestive of concepts they are struggling with
  • a shifting of note taking emphasis from verbatim content to ‘write what you think’ that promotes deeper engagement with the concepts during the lecture
  • a reusable resource that can be made available to other students, and form the basis of a flipped classroom in future delivery of the module.
  • absent students have a greater resources to allow them to catch up on their own and less need of the academic’s time.

A common concern of recordings is the impact on attendance however the evidence from the sector suggests that students will not substitute lecture attendance with viewing the recordings, and that access to recordings has little or no impact on attendance (Nordmann and McGeorge, 2018).

There are no automated recordings available during the Panopto trial and so staff are required to launch the Panopto recorder from the network applications, and then start and stop the recording as required during class. Publishing to Moodle is also a manual process and so the video can be edited if there are sections of the recordings to be removed. The sooner the recording can be made available to students the better so that they can review it while still fresh in their minds.

Nordmann, E. and McGeorge, P. (2018). Lecture capture in higher education: time to learn from the learners.10.17605/OSF.IO/UX29V. Available from

How do I create, edit and publish videos?

Panopto videos are only available to students through their Moodle modules. This First Steps with Panopto guide shows how to link a Moodle module to Panopto, and how to launch the Panopto Recorder application from a University computer (and how to install it on a laptop). You may wish to remove certain sections of a recording before publishing it to students which is shown in this quick guide to Panopto editing. The following guide relates to rolling forward Panopto recordings when modules are rolled forward each academic session.

Panopto have a wide range of help videos on their website which can be searched or browsed to find the relevant topic. The help with editing videos cover the following topics

  • tour of the editor
  • inserting one Panopto session into another Panopto video
  • embedding a YouTube video into a Panopto video
  • switching between multiple primary video streams using the focus tool
  • add or remove Powerpoint or Keynote slides to your video session
  • importing and editing automatically generated captions to your video
  • editing the table of contents
  • embedding a webpage into your Panopto video using a URL
  • how to trim sections out of your video

For more information contact Stephen Bruce, Learning Technology Support Manager, Information Services