How to turn a 25 Year Old Video into eLearning


This week seems to be full of reflective learning for me. After Tuesday’s reflections of Apple, The Cloud, and Litmos, I find myself looking back 25 years. In 1990 I was preparing to graduate from the University of Arizona with a degree in Media Arts. I loved the creativity of media production even back then when everything was analog. And that’s what today’s post is about.

25 years ago I was lucky enough to have a roommate studying herpetology. It was the perfect content for one of my required productions. Armed with the department’s VHS recorder I accompanied my roommate and herpetology friend to their favorite research spot. Actually, if you’re interested, I’ll just let you watch the video from here.

In all honesty, I really didn’t have a production plan for this project at the time. The plan was basically to follow these guys around and record what they do. Then go home, log the tapes, write a narrative script, and then spend a day or 2 in the edit suite on campus.  We didn’t specifically have “education” in mind as our ultimate goal with the video, but I think you’ll find that you learn a few things after watching the 8 minute video. So how were we able to do that without any knowledge of instructional design?

  • So what might this content look like today?
  • What would an instructional designer have done differently?
  • How would you assess someone’s knowledge after watching this video?
  • Would you put the content into an authoring tool?
  • What would a blended learning solution look like?

I have some ideas of my own, but I’d like to hear from you.

Watch the video, and take some notes, and let’s talk about it.

Reach out to me at brent(at), or @bschlenker on twitter.