Why Scripting for Lecture Videos is Crucial

Reasons why you must write a script when developing your lecture videos for online courses.

  1. Editing and Post Production.

    No matter how and where you record your lecture, it will likely need to be edited by an instructional technologist or learning designer. Using your script and on­screen cues (a.k.a. stage directions), we can follow along to make all of the necessary edits and add visual interest with graphics, text, charts or statistics that you’ve referred to in your lecture.

    Also, if you do struggle during your delivery but follow one script, we can use that script to string together your best takes and make it all appear seamless.

  2. Section 508 Compliance.

    In order to meet the needs of our students with different learning styles and documented learning disabilities and to remain compliant Section 508 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, we can use your script to quickly sync audio and text to create closed captioning for all course video and multimedia pieces.

    § 1194.24 Video and multimedia products. (Part C)

    (c) All training and informational video and multimedia productions which support the agency’s mission, regardless of format, that contain speech or other audio information necessary for the comprehension of the content, shall be open or closed captioned.

  3. Practice Makes Perfect.

    For some people, recording lecture content feels a lot like recording an outgoing voicemail message. You knew what you wanted to say, but the first 10 tries just didn’t feel right. Next thing you know you’re ad­libbing and you’re off message. The key to nailing this performance is to practice­­ and yes, it is a performance.

    Sound out words, annunciate, and make sure you’re not speeding through the words or under­stressing the main points of your lecture. By reading your script out loud, you will likely find that the way you write is somewhat different from the way you naturally speak. Adjust your wording and phrasing accordingly to make it flow more naturally. Then go back and practice with all the inflections, intonations, and emphasis this performance deserves.

  4. Just the facts, ma’am.

    By scripting your content for each lecture, you can make sure you have included everything. Whether you create a bullet point outline or begin writing freely at first, you have the opportunity to review your content to make sure it aligns with your learning objectives and that all information is accurate and relevant. Most importantly, it will keep you from going off on a tangents and help minimize the ums, uhs, and uncomfortable hesitations that come with trying to find the right words on the spot.

Scripting your lecture videos is probably the most unnatural­feeling step in developing your content for online courses, but it is possibly the most crucial. For most instructors, delivering a lecture in class is very natural, even routine. After all, you’re the expert. You probably have a general idea of what you’ll say when you get to class, and you’ve probably said it all before. Students may yell out their questions, or raise a hand, and you can deviate a little from your agenda, but the asynchronous online environment is not as forgiving. Students will see your face for the first time, and your lecture may likely be the most memorable thing about your course.