What to do with your recordings in Blackboard

As you are probably aware by now, video files should not be simply uploaded to Blackboard. The files are far too large and will rapidly use up your module\’s data quota. Instead, videos should be uploaded to Panopto.

However, some staff have enquired about managing their Collaborate recordings, which raises a number of questions – how to link to them, whether to upload to Panopto – so we thought it would be a good idea to explore this.

Data Storage

Let’s start by looking at the way the systems manage storage.

Blackboard

Every Blackboard module has a default data quota of 1000MB. Where there is a genuine need, this can be extended, but the data quota of the entire University needs to be carefully managed, as exceeding this has a significant financial implication. Removing videos is an easy way to bring this down. Remember that any resource you delete from a module must also be deleted in the files area in order to impact on the data quota.

Collaborate

Collaborate videos are stored outside of the module on which they were recorded, so do not impact on the data quota. However, there is an overall data quota for Collaborate that also needs careful management. As a result, we are required to archive older videos, having recently deleted all videos recorded prior to January 2021.

Panopto

There is currently no data quota for Panopto storage as we are charged by the number of views. However, this is likely to change in the future as Panopto moves to a charging by storage model.

Should you move Collaborate recordings to Panopto?

Given that Collaborate recordings eventually need to be archived, some staff have asked whether it would be better to move all Collaborate recordings to Panopto as a matter of course. This is probably not necessary but there may be instances when it would be a good idea:

  • Will the recording be required for a long time? If students will need to access the video for longer than a year, then it might be a good idea to download the files and upload to Panopto.
  • Will the recording need to be deployed on future modules? Some resources may be of use to students on future modules, in which case a move to Panopto may be a good idea so that resources can be shared between modules.
  • Does the video need captioning? One drawback of Collaborate is that it does not provide closed captions, which may be required for accessibility. If you have students on your course who need closed captions, then uploading videos to Panopto may be a good idea, as Panopto does have excellent captioning options.

Bear in mind that uploading videos wholesale to Panopto is a significant undertaking for you as the course tutor, so you should weigh up these issues before you decide what will work best for you and your students.

Also consider that, although there is currently no data quota on Panopto, this is likely to be introduced in the future, so we as an institution will also need to manage Panopto usage. Therefore it’s probably a good idea to only upload resources to Panopto where you think it is really necessary.

If you have any queries feel free to get in touch at tel@worc.ac.uk

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