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Video Case Studies

Previous examples

This section contains clickable examples of recordings made using Replay at Oxford University. Replay recordings are typically private, accessible only via WebLearn to a subset of Oxford students, but the recordings on this page have been made public and do not require you to log in to view them. For more information on the equipment used for these scenarios please click on the Equipment section on the Help site.

Slides and Audio - An Introduction to Replay Lecture Capture

This is an example of a recording without video, using only slides + audio. This is recommended as it is the simplest way to get started using Replay. The PowerPoint slides were loaded onto the presenter's computer and a USB boundary microphone was connected to the computer. The Panopto manual recorder was installed on the computer, and the presenter manually started and stopped the recording. The recording was automatically uploaded to the Replay cloud server where it was edited and released to viewers.
Each PowerPoint slide transition has automatically generated a chapter marker in the Contents list. Both PowerPoint slide metadata and spoken audio have been automatically indexed, and are searchable. Try searching for the word "microphone" to see how many times it appears in the slides, and how many times the word was spoken by the presenter.

Slides, Video and Audio - Condensed Matter, Physics

Click here to view the Condensed Matter Physics video
This was one of a series of lectures delivered by Steve Simon in the Physics Martin Wood lecture theatre. An automated remote PTZ (pan-tilt-zoom) camera was mounted at the back of the lecture theatre and connected to a Windows computer situated in the projection booth behind. The lecturer wore a wireless tie-clip microphone, and the receiver was also connected to the projection booth PC via an audio matrix. PowerPoint slides were loaded onto a second presenter's Windows computer at the front of the theatre.
The Panopto remote recorder was installed on both computers and recordings were scheduled at the start of each term using a web interface. The projection booth PC captured the audio and so this was selected as the primary recorder. The presenter's computer was the secondary recorder. Both computers recorded at the same time, and the two streams were automatically syncronised and merged into a single recording.
The recording was delivered to a private subfolder (known in Replay as an "assignment" folder) where it was "topped and tailed" (edited) using the Replay web editor by an administrator, before being moved to the main parent folder where students could access it. The process is mostly automated and the recordings in the Martin Wood Theatre are typically made available the same day as they are recorded.

Advanced Features - Adding Slides and Captions to Video

This is an example of a recording session built manually within Replay, rather than being captured entirely live. Building a session is a more advanced way to create and publish a recording within Replay and typically requires more work, though the result can be of a higher quality. It is also an example of how Replay can be used to host an archive of older departmental recordings. A video detailing how to build a session from scratch within Replay is available to view here.
This lecture was recorded at Exam Schools in 2009 (before Replay was available), using a professional camera on a tripod and a wireless tie-clip microphone. The PowerPoint slides were not captured or filmed at the time, though the .PPT files were retained. In 2015, the videos and .PPT files were uploaded into Replay and, using the simple web editor, the PowerPoint slide transitions were easily synchronised with the video. The process was particularly efficient because the slide numbers are clearly visible in the video next to the presenter's head! Replay will convert most uploaded videos into the modern H.264 MP4 format.
Captions are also available for this recording. The captions were created by student volunteer at Oxford University who transcribed the video using the simple Replay web editor. Captions can be exported from Replay for offline use alongside the MP4 files, and external .SRT files can also be uploaded into Replay to be displayed as captions. There is a paid (third-party) transcription service available directly within Replay. Contact the Replay team via for further information.

Professor Millican has stated that, because recordings of his earlier lectures are available online, he believes he has more freedom in his live lectures to focus on specific topics, without worrying about covering all areas of the syllabus.  

Using Panopto as a screen-capture tool

The main use of the Panopto recording software (offered by the Replay service) is as a lecture-recording tool – either to record live lectures, or for a lecturer to record ‘snippets’ as supplementary learning materials. The same software can be used as a screen-capture tool – to demonstrate and record activities on a computer screen. Note that it is necessary to record an audio source simultaneously – Panopto will not work without an audio source. At Oxford University during 2015-2016, Panopto was used during usability evaluation tests among student users of improved learning areas (sites) designed as part of the WebLearn Improved Student Experience (WISE) project.
WebLearn is the virtual learning environment used by staff and students for both full distance and blended learning study programmes. This was the first time that the Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL) team had carried out formal usability testing. The WISE team members (researchers) devised a methodology to assess certain usability criteria that would be helpful in the context of the project. The methodology included various techniques generally used in usability testing such as first-click testing, scenario tasks and think-aloud activities, focus group discussions and memory tasks. Researchers needed a way to record exactly how participants used the WebLearn interface while doing scenario tasks and think-aloud activities, so that their on-screen movements could be analysed later.
  • Before participants arrived, Panopto was launched using the Chrome browser under a super admin login, with the microphone plugged in (see Figure 1).
  • The testing of the WebLearn site was done using the Firefox browser so that not to interfere with the Panopto recording (see Figure 2).
  • All notifications tools on the researcher’s desktop – such as email, skype etc. – were turned off to avoid disturbing the user.
  • The researcher guided the participant in carrying out specific tasks, and the screen and audio conversations were recorded simultaneously in Panopto.
The scenario tasks usually lasted about 30 minutes per participant, after which the Panopto recording was stopped. Afterwards the Panopto recording for each participant was exported as an .mp4 file for further analysis. This solution was the simplest and most cost effective to run in this research context, although there are better tools available to monitor usability studies, for example, Silverback on a Mac (
Panopto software was installed on the researcher’s computer, and a USB microphone was used to record the conversation between the researcher and the participant, and the participants’ think-aloud narrative. The procedure was simple:
Figure 1: Recording set up in Panopto
Figure 2: Example of a WebLearn site being tested (in a different browser)
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Written by IT Services. Latest revision 8 December 2017