Festival2011/Making Educational Video Social

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There's an exciting opportunity to create an environment for educational video that provides a better learning experience - one that's interactive and immersive, even when the content isn't designed with that in mind. But existing solutions to make video more social don't tend to take into account specific educational needs, and those that do sometimes fumble on user experience or are limited to content creators with the resources to create specialized educational material and platforms.

Join us to hack on the latest challenges facing video learning platforms on the web. In particular, we see some major problems as:

  • Relevance: How to make sure people are participating in the same discussion. Starting point ideas: this could be through making discussion linked to particular points or time-spans in the video, having channels for particular topics, limiting discussion to members of a particular class or context
  • Distraction: How can discussion around educational video enhance rather than distract from the learning experience? Starting point ideas: make social aspect passive and opt in, integrate discussion into appropriate content points only.
  • Context: How can this platform encourage trust and collaboration? Starting point ideas: profiles, badges, identifying different types of discussion, encouraging additional background info be added to comments.
  • Motivation and Seeding: What are incentives to have a productive discussion that can be built in to a platform like this? Starting ideas: asking for particular responses rather than open ended discussion, scaffolding participation.

Course facilitators

Anne Jonas

Colin Clark, Inclusive Design Research Centre

Dean Jansen, PCF

Skills Needed

What you need from participants for the session.

UX/UI specialists - brainstorm and wireframe approaches to some of the major problems around building productive discussion spaces for educational video online

Education Researches and Educators - make sure platform goals match up with trusted best practices for learning.

Students and learners - come help create something that would help you learn

Front-end developers - try out prototypes in Javascript and HTML5

Group Activities

Brainstorm: What interactions and navigation concepts for discussion could enhance the learning experience around video? How can we motivate learners to engage?

What usage scenarios do you want to illustrate? What design elements do you want to explore? What kind of technical base would enable this?


  • How do people learn from videos? Where does discussion fit in?
  • What kind of videos are they learning from
  • Are there other kinds of interactions that could be melded with discussion for more productive learning? (notetaking, annotation, etc.)
  • How could we make this happen technically?
  • What are bite size bits we could start on?

Post-Event Participation

How people can get involved with your project after the festival. PCF and IDRC are in the research and development phase of making this project come to life. Talk to us to continue to participate in design, coding and usability testing throughout the process!


Session hash tags specifically for notes on your session, and hash tags specific to your project for promotion.

Relevant links

Don't just do it, let people know what you did! Links to all assets generated during your session, photos, video's, blog posts, sketches, all the artifacts from your session.

EtherPad for the session to take notes and collaborate