There are many powerful tools you can use for creating a presentational video as a creative assignment, capstone project, or when delivering research findings. These tools vary widely in terms of functionality, complexity, cost, and cross-platform availability (i.e., whether it exists on PC and/or Mac), so knowing what you hope to achieve in your video can help you decide what tools to employ.
Before deciding on your production and editing tools, though, you'll actually want to do a bit of brainstorming to decide how you want the video to look and feel (i.e., what the video's structural elements will consist of). Once you have a good understanding of the end-result that you're hoping to produce, you can then target the recording and editing programs to match your desired outcome.
Here are some initial questions you may want to consider when thinking about the potential components of your video:
- Do you want yourself to be visible on screen? Or do you just want your voice to be heard?
- What additional visual media elements are you intending to show during this video? Still images? Video? Powerpoint or Keynote presentation slides?
- Do you want to incorporate any external audio or music, either as a critical component of the presentation, or as a supplemental emotional driver to the video?
- How much video editing are you willing to perform?
- Do you want your video to have a live dynamic to it, or do you want it to feel more polished and heavily produced?
Now that you've made some decisions from these questions, let's take a look at some of the options for recording your presentation, along with some key features and pros and cons.
For better or worse, Zoom is a platform we are all pretty comfortable with by now, and recording yourself in Zoom is fairly easy to do. As well, if you are sharing your screen during your presentation, and want to capture a discreet, full-screen recording of whatever you are sharing, Zoom provides that functionality as well. Here is a link to a resource that shows you how you set up your Zoom recording preferences to optimize your settings for your specific needs: http://resources.learninglab.xyz/simple/people/katie-g/optimizing-zoom-recordings
- Pros - Built-in functionality for recording discreet streams of video (e.g., Active Speaker view, Gallery view, Shared screen view, etc.)
- Cons - The video resolution is not very good! As well, the audio quality can vary as well depending on connectivity and bandwidth issues.
If you are producing a presentational video that incorporates Keynote or Powerpoint, and you're in a class that uses Canvas as its course site, then Panopto could be a wonderful option for you.
- Pros - Panopto is already baked into all Canvas course pages, so this can be a one-stop shop for producing, editing, and sharing your video presentation with fellow students and teaching staff.
- Cons - Performing minor edits (trimming, ) is easy to do, but more complex editing will likely require a more sophisticated editing program like Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro X, or DaVinci Resolve.
Even if you don't know how to capture yourself in any other manner, chances are that you're familiar with recording video on your smartphone!
- Pros - Quality! Your iPhone or smartphone will most likely record at a higher bit rate and resolution than your laptop camera or desktop camera
- Cons - Recording on your smartphone will likely require a bit of editing, so make sure you manage your media effectively, and be prepared to do a bit of simple editing.
Screen capture software
Powerpoint & Keynote
If you are using Powerpoint or Keynote to create slides for your presentational video, you can also use these programs to record a narration to your slides as you scroll through them, and then export a video of the combination of your visuals and audio narration