Professor Michael Expands the Traditional Classroom with Mediasite


Did you know that Sacramento State has a satellite campus in Rajasthan, India? Technically, no, but Associate Professor Boniface Michael flexed his classroom walls while traveling in India last summer. “During a 7+ hour bus ride near Jaisalmer, I decided to experiment with Mediasite Lecture Capture, which Sac State had recently migrated to. It worked out well, so I continued to edit, add PowerPoint slide images and create lecture videos.” In a rural area, halfway across the world, and a long bus ride – how did he do it? Leveraging Mediasite’s U.S. servers while using a hotspot from a local Airtel India cell phone data plan. “It worked beautifully,” he says.

Professor Michael demonstrates Mediasite on his laptop
Taking Mediasite on the road! Photo credit: Professor Michael’s son, Raul.

To date, Professor Michael’s Mediasite lecture videos have logged nearly 2,500 views and nearly 800 viewing hours. It’s a true tech win – the ability to make learning accessible, and create educational shelf life that provides value long after the initial lecture. Mediasite Lecture Capture technology is one of the newest ways Sac State is paradigm-shifting, transforming the traditional classroom setting, and providing a new muse for faculty to develop and share information with students, and each other.

What is Mediasite?

Lecture Capture technology can be used to record almost anywhere: in the office, at home, or in the classroom. Faculty can record, edit, store, and distribute presentations and share them online or within a SacCT course. Presentations can include video and audio, and split screen capability where the lecture and supplementary materials (such as PowerPoint presentations) appear simultaneously. Students can also customize their viewing experience by toggling the sizes of the lecture or materials windows as needed.

IRT’s Learning Space Services remodeled select campus classrooms to offer Mediasite recording capability in Fall 2016. Non-Mediasite videos can be uploaded into the Mediasite desktop application and hosted as-is, or with a little work, can be enhanced with supplemental materials.

“Mediasite is precisely what on-demand should be: bringing the classroom to the student, whether they need to revisit a lecture, are in their living room, or on their phone, and yes, even riding on a bus(!). Whenever, and wherever our students are, they can learn. For me, this is a real difference-maker for how we can teach and students can learn.”

- Professor Boniface Michael

Distance Learning, with the Personal Touch

With a background in Human Resources & Organizational Behavior, Professor Michael knows people. And knows that they have varying needs, learning styles and ways they engage with technology. His research and teaching focuses on organizational culture and values, human resource management (HRM), conflict management and international management. Communication and face-to-face interactions characterize his teachings but, after being introduced to Mediasite in fall 2016 and in CTL’s summer teaching institute, he redesigned his HRM course that averaged 55 students a section. If a student isn’t able to be front and center, Mediasite technology can facilitate the next best thing. “Most of my students seek work/life balance. Many have jobs, or families to care for and are working to complete their undergraduate degree to enhance their career prospects too. By expanding the shelf life of a traditional lecture, students still are able to ‘gain access’ to course concepts and are better prepared for in-class case analyses with other students,” Professor Michael says.

Can you hear me now?

As clear as Mediasite’s audio quality, it’s also helping to address student needs. Among many ‘asks’ in a 2016 Educause student technology survey, nearly 80% requested more lecture capture in their courses. Another benefit of lecture capture technology? Professor Michael has noticed improved memory retention and recall of course content among his students. “I can very precisely embed slides into the lectures to emphasize content or a point I’m trying to make within the recording – it helps capture the classroom experience more fully.”

The intuitive interface drew Professor Michael to Mediasite, and the ease in which he can post – and students can access his lectures – makes it a powerful tool in his current courses. It also helps him think differently about calibrating his pedagogy to center around this accessible learning module.

Learn more about Mediasite – including which classrooms this technology is offered, here.

Published: 04/03/17