I took a look at seven edtech apps that are utilizing video to teach students. Here’s what I learned.
Video is a powerful tool that can engage students, ignite discussion, and facilitate learning beyond the classroom. Video can expose learners to places or events that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to experience. It allows for difficult and abstract concepts to be broken down into a more accessible format for students. The use of video has also been shown to promote more efficient memory recall of the particular concept.
Whether you’re already a seasoned user of video in the classroom or planning to implement it in the future, here’s a quick look at seven of the most popular video-based edtech apps, ranked from least to most expensive.
What is it? Flipgrid is a video discussion tool where teachers can post questions and students answer by uploading video responses. The platform merges social media features with student-centered learning, as students can continue the conversation by sharing, discussing, or replying to each other’s videos.
What’s great about it? Flipgrid can be a great way for educators to encourage ALL students to engage in discussion, and not just the students who always raise their hands during class. The platform can also be used in a variety of ways: educators can have students do something as simple as recall what they did that day or as complex as describing their process in solving a difficult math problem.
How much does it cost? Since Flipgrid was acquired by Microsoft last year, the platform has been completely free for educators.
What do teachers complain about? Teachers say the social-media style features and layout can sometimes distract students from the actual assignment at hand. It’s best to use Flipgrid with students and classrooms that are mature enough to stay focused on the assignment at hand.
Image Courtesy of EdTechTeam.com
What is it? Vialogues is a video-based learning tool that combines video content with meaningful conversation. Users upload videos and invite others to engage and interact with the content through time-stamped comments, surveys, and multiple-choice questions. The platform was developed by the EdLab at Columbia University’s Teachers College.
What’s great about it? Like Flipgrid, Viologues is another powerful tool where students can facilitate and continue discussion outside the classroom. Educators at the high-school or higher ED level can use Vialogues to allow students to view and reflect on the projects of their fellow peers.
How much does it cost? The Vialogues platform is completely free for educators and students to use.
What do teachers complain about? While Vialogues is simple and easy to use, some educators say the platform could benefit from implementing extra features. Vialogues lacks the support for embedded, interactive assessment and data analysis that is often seen in other video edtech apps.
Image Courtesy of ACERT.
What is it? Thinglink is an immersive storytelling app that allows students to use digital media to express themselves and demonstrate their learning. The platform allows students to link images, audio, and videos from anywhere on the web together to create highly interactive and engaging presentations. Students can also upload their own images and media files to use in the app.
What’s great about it? This tool has the power to easily create dynamic 3D virtual tours and videos to engage students and bring lessons to life. Older students can also work together with teachers to develop and create their own virtual tours.
How much does it cost? Thinglink offers a free version where users have full access to the creative tools for designing interactive images, videos, and tours. To use the more specific classroom management tools the company offers would cost $35 annually per classroom. The cost for a school or district to purchase the platform starts at $1,000 a year.
What do teachers complain about? While Thinglink has the ability to create highly engaging video content for students, there is a steep initial learning curve – and a notable time investment required to create projects – before it can be implemented in the classroom.
Image Courtesy of ThingLink Blog.
What is it? Edpuzzle is an interactive video editing tool where teachers can scaffold text, audio, quizzes, and resources into videos from websites like YouTube, Khan Academy, and TED Talks. Students can also use the platform to create their own video lessons for their peers to use and share.
What’s great about it? Educators across the US have been using Edpuzzle to facilitate blended learning and flipped classroom models in schools. The Edpuzzle website has some neat ideas and tricks on utilizing video within a flipped classroom.
How much does it cost? Edpuzzle has a free version where teachers can store up to 20 videos in their account. Anymore than that requires a pro version, which starts at $65 a month for schools or $8.50 a month for teachers.
What do teachers complain about? While the platform hosts a ton of inspiring and educational video content, it doesn’t do a great job at curating that content – resulting in teachers having to spend precious time sifting through it all. In addition, while Edpuzzle does boast a considerable amount of features, it is missing the ability to combine multiple videos into one condensed lesson for students.
Image Courtesy of Centralia Public Schools.
What is it? Educreations is an interactive screencasting tool that allows educators to create video lessons and immerse students in the learning process.
What’s great about it? Many educators have been utilizing Educreations to connect with parents and keep them involved in their child’s learning process. For example, one teacher used the app to instruct parents on how to help students complete their math homework at home.
How much does it cost? Educreations has a free version where teachers can upload images and use most of the platform’s other features. In order to work with other media, presentations, and web pages, however, requires a pro version. The pro version costs a teacher $8.25 per month. If a school is interested in purchasing the platform for its teachers to use, the price starts at $1,495 per year.
What do teachers complain about? Compared to other apps, Educreations is missing a lot of features, particularly those used in editing recorded video. While not a deal breaker, it can make recording lessons frustrating for some teachers.
Image Courtesy of American Mathematical Society.
What is it? VidCode is an online coding platform that teaches middle and high school students computer programming through video editing.
What’s great about it? VidCode is a women owned and operated startup that engages students with unique projects such as programming Instagram filters,creating memes, or editing Youtube Videos, in order to encourage young women to learn coding. Although the platform was created with female coders in mind, it has been shown to be an effective learning tool for all students in the classroom.
How much does it cost? Students and Educators can access the first module on VidCode for free. To continue using the platform, schools will have to contact the company and ask for a quote.
What do teachers complain about? The platform assumes that new users already have a bit of coding experience and exposure prior to starting the first module. Unfortunately, the platform offers little introductory information or materials for educators and students to use.
Image Courtesy of TechCrunch.
What is it? PlayPosit is an online learning platform where teachers can add interactivity to online videos, provide live feedback to students, and track and record data on student performance.
What’s great about it? Educators often combine the platform’s powerful data analytics with its video interactivity tools to cultivate an enriching flipped classroom experience for students.
How much does it cost? PlayPosit offers a free version where educators have access to some of the question types and interactivity tools on the platform. The full version costs $144 annually per educator.
What do teachers complain about? While the platform is simple and easy to use, some teachers agree that there are many apps which offer similar features at a lower price. Most of the product features are also locked when using the free version.
Image Courtesy of Playposit.
If you’re interested in learning more about implementing video in the classroom, Education Week has an interesting read on the best ways to use videos and related media with your students.
What are some of your favorite video-based edtech apps to use in the classroom?
Let us know in the comments below!
Jamal Merritt is an intern at LearnLaunch.