Best Practices for Recording Lectures

Self Recording:

For self recordings, the best approach is to create a voiced-over PowerPoint file where the resulting presentation is contained within the PowerPoint file along with your slides either as audio-only or audio and video.

An example of such a recording can be viewed here:

For instructions on how to do this, see this link:

The other option is to use audio/video screen capture programs such as Camtasia and CamStudio for Windows, or ScreenFlow for MacOS X. These solutions produce a video file that can be uploaded to nanoHUB.

TechSmith Camtasia: https://www.techsmith.com/store/camtasia
CamStudio (free): https://camstudio.org/
ScreenFlow: https://www.telestream.net/screenflow/overview.htm

Recording Suggestions:

  1. Use a lavalier microphone. These microphones are designed to focus on your voice and not ambient noises such as fan and ventilation noises. See Equipment Recommendations below.
  2. Find a quiet space. This is nearly impossible these days. There is always fan and ventilation noise.  Do the best you can.  Your lavalier microphone will help filter out ambient noise.
  3. Posture affects your voice.  It is best to try and keep your diaphragm open while speaking.  If recording in your office, try to sit erect or even stand.  Discover what works best for you.
  4. Do not speak through transitions. When transitioning from slide to slide pause your speech before going to the next slide.  PowerPoint momentarily interrupts the audio recording when making the slide transition.  The other advantage here is that if you decide to re-record a slide it will be much easier to work with your recording knowing you can easily limit the scope of re-recording to a single slide.
  5. Time is irrelevant.  When greeting or ending a lecture, remember that you do not know when the user is viewing your presentation. Avoid greetings such as “good morning”, etc.  Much better would be to offer a “welcome” or “hello”.  Similarly at the end, if you are referencing the next lecture then simply offer an “up next…” or “in our next lecture….” instead of “tomorrow we will ….”.
  6. Remember that this is a one-to-one presentation.  Frame your speaking as if you are talking to one person instead of a group.  Mentally picture yourself standing with the viewer as you are making your presentation. The words “we” and "you" work quite well here.  For example: “Here we see that X is less than Y” or “You will note that X is less than Y.”

Equipment Recommendations:

It is recommended that a lavalier microphone be used along with an audio-to-USB converter.  This will produce a much cleaner audio recording overusing the builtin microphone in your laptop.  It is nearly impossible to find a room that is quiet. There are all kinds of fan and air circulation noises present. A cavalier microphone improves the contrast between your voice and background noises. It is also recommended that an audio to USB adapter is purchased.

Here are some low-cost recommendations:

Audio-Technica ATR3350xiS Omni Condenser Microphone (ATR Series)
(About $35)

Purchase on Amazon:

Purchase at B&H Photo:

UGREEN USB Audio Adapter External Stereo Sound Card with 3.5mm Headphone and Microphone Jack

Purchase on Amazon:

Self Recording Post Production

The nanoHUB content production team has a production process in which we create the formats that one finds available on nanoHUB.  We have worked with voiced PowerPoint presentations and screen captures.  More details on this will be forthcoming.

In-Class and Seminar Recording

Best practices for in-classroom or seminar recording will be forthcoming.

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