The right media for the scenario

What is the right type of video or photos for your scenario-based training? 

To create a course you will need to collect content. This will depend on the kind of course you want to create and could involve a shoot or using media you already have.  ShowHow supports a range of media types to give your learners a better sense of the scenario and to learn from the experience. 

360 video or images are great for when you want the learner to feel like they're in the scenario. They support 3D interactions and more ways to engage the learner, however they should only be used when the perspective is from the learner's view. 

Video and photos shot from a mobile phone or other camera are great for showing a scenario unfolding or where the learner does not need to feel part of the scenario. You can also use the built-in screen recorder to record software or web pages when you want to train on systems. 

For some scenarios, you may need all 3 methods - standard video to show how a situation plays out, 360 videos to give the learner the sense of managing the situation or making decisions, and screen recording to show any systems or screens as part of the process. 

Shooting 360 Video and photos

360 video is easy to shoot. You have little control over the composition so positioning the camera is important. When you shoot, put the camera where your learner would likely be standing if they were there. Have anyone who talks to the learner talk directly to the camera.  A really good trick is to get everyone to look at the camera when the learner needs to make a decision, it's a very effective way of applying a little pressure! 

You can usually control your camera with an app on your phone. If your managing the shoot, you can stand behind something or out of the door and control the scene. If you can't do that, then you will need to be part of the scenario!

monopod with legs

Monopods with legs that can be extended to around the height of a person are a great tool to mount 360 cameras. Alternatively, a helmet or head mount is a great way to record from the learner's perspective.  

An important note to mention is that 360 videos should be as stable as possible. Only use stabilized footage and footage where the camera wasn't moving or moving as little or as smoothly as possible. This is for 2 reasons:

  1. If the video is viewed in a VR headset any sudden movement is more likely to cause sickness.
  2. Videos are much larger files when the footage is moving.  If only part of the video is moving, it the file size is similar to a standard video, if the whole thing is moving - it's significantly larger.


Recording video and photos with your phone

10 Tips on Recording Video Like a Pro With Your Smartphone
Use your phone to record video

You can record scenarios with your phone to give a different perspective of the situation. As with 360 videos, try and keep the phone stable and keep the view wide enough to see the action that is required.  To keep a sense of realism in your scenario,  you can adopt the style of video you see shot by bystanders in events often seen on social media. Keep the camera focused on the subject at hand, move from person to person as they fulfill their role in the scenario. 

In this situation, the protagonist or learner should be in the scene - i.e. we're watching how someone does something and seeing how they react. 

Screen capture and recording

You can use ShowHow to record a screen video to demonstrate how to use software or describe a process.  The easiest way to do this is on your device or computer and set the app or webpage up ready to record.   Voice is automatically recorded while you record video, so you can describe the process while you are recording. 

Screen recording

Mixing them together for multi-stage learning

A good way to give someone the full experience of a scenario is multistage learning, i.e. seeing the scenario playing out, then hearing what is happening, then being guided to do it yourself - then finally doing it yourself.  

For example, a scenario where someone must make decisions to manage an incident and then report on the event in a system: 

  1. Short mobile phone video of the incident shot in the style of a bystander, showing the situation playing out and highlighting what happens when it goes wrong.
  2. Longer more stable footage from a phone with a voiceover explaining the key parts of the scenario, highlighting the decisions to make and the impact of those decisions.  Screen recording of the systems showing how the information is recorded.
  3. 360 video from the perspective of the learner, showing the situation playing out and a voice explaining what is happening from the learner's perspective.
  4. The learner then does the scenario themselves,  using the 360 videos to view from their perspective. They make decisions, identify hazards, and manage the scenario. They then go through the process of reporting the incident by deciding what data to enter and complete the reporting process. 

Course promotions

Another way to mix media is to create a course promotion. This could involve creating the course as normal from a learner's perspective using the 360 camera, then creating a short bystander-style video with a mobile device showing an excerpt of the scenario - possibly with something dramatic like it going wrong. This then becomes a course promotion video that can be used to encourage participation. 

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