by Seth Daugherty
As an eLearning Librarian at SCC, I decided to try some of the tools SCC has to offer and found myself intrigued by TechSmith's Relay Recorder. At first glance, Relay appears to be the perfect solution for flipping a classroom. Relay's website states it integrates easily with any LMS, it's available on Mac or PC, and a video created at home or at SCC is easily uploaded to the self-hosted Relay servers. Some of the more intriguing features include in-video quizzes, automatic closed caption generation with built-in-speech-to-text, and analytics.
The first thing to note once IT installs Relay is that it's accessible via PowerPoint. PowerPoint is still the go-to presentation app for most professionals given that Office is on every SCC computer. In fact, the best way to access Relay is by opening PowerPoint first. After you open PowerPoint, you'll see an Add-Ins tab and a button that says 'Auto record with TechSmith Relay Recorder' (assuming that Relay is installed on your computer). Press this button and you're off to the races, but hold on, first there is a little house cleaning to do. You'll want to login using your Web Advisor ID and password so that the video can be uploaded, and you'll want to choose a profile.
There are four profile options to choose from. The profile helps you decide how you want your PowerPoint video uploaded. You can choose the RSCCD Relay Content Server, the RSCCD Server with YouTube, directly to YouTube publishing, or you can decide later. This choice really depends on how you plan to show the content to your students so it's wise to think this decision through carefully. If you plan on uploading the finished video to YouTube, you'll have to authenticate your YouTube account after you login to your Relay account.
After you create the presentation video in PowerPoint and edit it with the simple-to-use editing clip tool, you'll click the 'Submit' button which uploads the video to the self-hosted Relay servers.
Then you'll head to your Relay account and login to have a look at the video and add closed captioning. Adding closed captioning is relatively easy. My recommendation is to write out a script and copy and paste this into the caption editor on the Relay server and make edits as needed. You can also try the built-in speech-to-text feature. I was a little disappointed to discover that the quiz feature isn't available at this time.
I certainly haven't mentioned all the features Relay has to offer and truth be told I no doubt have much to learn, but I hope this serves as a quick primer and gets you interested enough to give Relay a try for yourself. Certainly if you've used the flipped classroom model, or you're thinking about trying to flip your classroom, this could be an invaluable tool to get you started.
Here are some helpful links that aided me in writing this article: