The role of live video capture production in the development of student communication skills
Civil and natural resources engineering students at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, take specific courses requiring small group research projects and the presentation of findings to staff and peers. Although one of the aims of these presentations is to assist in the development of the students’ communication skills, staff have raised concerns over their effectiveness for this purpose. The Virtual-I Presenter (ViP) software was created to allow students to pre-record and review their presentations through live video capture synchronised to a slide presentation. With no video editing facility available, students were required to repeat recordings which they judged unsatisfactory before submitting their work for staff and peer review. This paper reports on the experience and outcomes from 97 students in two groups using the ViP software. Few students reported the lack of video editing facilities problematic. 80% of the students using the software reported a positive experience with advantages for the development of their personal communication skills. Other feedback indicates use of the ViP software contributes to self- and peer reflection.