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Mediasite is a video and media platform managed and fully supported by Queen's University Belfast Information Services. It affords University staff the ability to create, manage and distribute video content, presentations and podcasts.
Mediasite integrates with learning environments such as QOL, Moodle and Canvas, and can also be used with the Content Managment System (CMS), WordPress blogs and SharePoint. It is a one-stop shop for all of your media content.
As well as providing a platform, Mediasite also provides tools (Mediasite Desktop Recorder and MyMediasite) which allow you to create, manage and share your own content, using your own devices. See the video below for more information:
The Mediasite team also provides the following additional services:
Finally, Mediasite is entirely capable of managing and automating campus-wide lecture capture, when integrated with a number of other systems in the university (such as room bookings, teaching modules and the VLE). However this currently requires investment, not only in these systems, but also in the teaching room audio and video recording infrastructure acros the campus. The long-term goal of the team is to realise this capability by working with other sections of the university and provide a robust lecture capture solution across Queen's and its subsidiary colleges.
The Mediasite server is entirely maintained and supported by Queen's University. This provides the benefits of:
Note: Mediasite user accounts are currently only for staff members. Students do not need a user account in order to access content on Mediasite.
If you have a Mediasite user account, you should see an icon in your Quick Links in Queen's Online, like the one below:
This will take you to your My Mediasite portal.
Note: Mediasite user accounts are currently only for staff members. Students do not need a user account in order to access content on Mediasite.
To apply for a Mediasite account, complete the online registration form. After submission, we aim to have your account up and running within 2–3 business days.
Try the following suggestions:
If your content is not hosted on Mediasite, but was on the pre-2018 server, Mediator, see:
If you have not found a solution here, contact us via the IT Service Desk.
Slow uploads could be caused by a number of different things.
The most common reason will be the speed and/or quality of the internet connection to your location. If you find that it takes a very long time to upload from home, but a much shorter time in your office, then most likely your home internet connection isn't quite up to providing fast video delivery. We recommend uploading in a place that you know has a good connection.
If you are on Wi-Fi or mobile networks, your upload speed will be slowed down if your signal level is poor; i.e. there are too many walls, electronics or other obstacles between your device and the Wi-Fi router or signal provider.
If you are uploading a video file to MyMediasite (i.e. which has not been created on Mediasite Desktop Recorder), you may need to consider the size of the video. Practically any video file you upload will be compressed to a certain degree, using a form of encoding or codec. Most video software provides default encoding options for different usage, such as home viewing, presentation, or use on the web. Where possible choose a "web video" or similar option when exporting your video content. Standard file sizes for a video encoded for web shouldn't need to be more than approximately:
*using a video encoding rate (bitrate) of 1.2Mbps
If your video is much larger than the above, we recommend that you re-encode to a smaller bitrate.
The Mediasite service processes videos in the order in which they are received. So, if you happen to be uploading content at the same time as a lot of other people, then you may have to wait longer than you would expect. We recommend that users bear this in mind when working to time constraints.
However, there are ways that you can speed up processing time:
If the above approaches have not been adhered to, then normal processing time can be a little longer than real-time; i.e. a 45 min video could take an hour, even without a queue of videos.
If you have waited for longer than this and the video is still marked as "processing", file a ticket on the IT Service Desk and we will investigate this for you.
Mediasite Desktop Recorder (MDR) is an app which can be installed on your computer or tablet, by downloading from My Mediasite. It is also pre-installed on all centrally-bookable teaching room PCs.
MDR gives staff the ability to generate content on their own computer, with minimal setup and equipment required. These video/audio/slideshow presentations are automatically uploaded to My Mediasite, where the staff member can review the video, manage permissions, make basic edits if required and share with their audience (see What is My Mediasite?).
For more information on how to use Mediasite Desktop Recorder, see our Resources page.
Mediasite Desktop Recorder (MDR) can be installed on any PC or Mac. It comes installed by default on all podium PCs that are in centrally-bookable teaching rooms.
To install on your own computer, or a podium PC that is not in a centrally-bookable teaching room, you will need administrator priviliges; if you do not, you will need to either obtain admin privileges, or request that the software be installed by the administrator responsible for the computer.
Note: As well as QUB computers, the Mediasite licence allows staff members to install MDR on their own computers - so if you often work away from your desk, you could for instance install it on your laptop.
MDR can be downloaded from the My Mediasite portal. On any page within the portal, simply click on the Add Media icon at the top right of the page:
On the next page, click on the link to download the Mediasite Desktop Recorder. Follow the instructions to download the installer to your computer. You can then run the installer to install Mediasite Desktop Recorder software on your computer.
When in use, MDR needs to know which Mediasite user is recording content, so that when it uploads to eh server, it will know to place the content into your folder. So, on first use, it will tell you that you need to register the software from the my Mediasite portal. You can either do this from the download page if it is still open in your browser, or otherwise go back to the Add Media page and click on the second link:
You may be prompted by your browser to open the link using MDR. Agree to this:
Once completed, you will see your staff number appear at the top left of the Mediasite Desktop Recorder window; this means that the software is registered to your user account. If using a personal computer, you shouldn't need to re-register the software again. If using shared computers such as podium PCs, it is possible that the setting will be wiped by the computer after use; if this is the case, you'll need to register again next time you use the software.
To generate content using Mediasite Desktop Recorder you need:
For maximum functionality, we recommend additionally:
In Mediasite Desktop Recorder, you can produce recordings in the following modes:
Sometimes a presenter may wish to point to particular areas of the screen using the mouse, to focus attention on a particular detail. Mediasite Desktop Recorder's slideshow mode does not record mouse movement, however there are alternatives to perform this functionality, which will be picked up by MDR.
A spotlight (where the whole screen is darkened except for a "spotlight" over the mouse) provides instant focus on a small area of the screen. Here is an example of a this:
There are a number of ways to achieve this; see How do I add a spotlight to my desktop recordings?
Some recording software, such as Camtasia, and hardware such as the Logitech Spotlight presentation remotes, allow "spotlighting" an area of the screen, to focus the viewer's attention on a detail – as shown in the example below:
Mediasite Desktop Recorder does not include this functionality at present, however there are other ways to achieve this (such as with the Logitech pointers mentioned above). In the absence of a pointer with this function, there are some software packages available.
We have successfully tested SwordSoft Mousetrack to work with Mediasite Desktop Recorder in both screencast and slideshow modes. It is free to use (with some limitations) and can be installed on your computer by anyone with administrator privileges. Full functionality can be purchased from the website for a small cost. The above screenshot was created using this software.
To use Swordsoft Mousetrack, install it on your computer, and then open the control panel from the Start menu. Set the following options:
Thereafter every time you press F1, you will toggle a spotlight over the mouse pointer.
NB: Alternatively you can enable the control bar to allow you to toggle the spotlight with your mouse.
Note: Mediasite Desktop Recorder (MDR) can only be used by a Mediasite user account holder.
When MDR runs for the first time on a computer, it needs to register with your user account via My Mediasite, the online portal. This ensures that you are authenticated, and that your content is uploaded to the correct folder. If your computer setup changes, or if it is a shared computer which regularly wipes user data (such as on centrally-booked teaching room PCs), this will need to be repeated, but on private computers this should only be required once.
Assuming you have a Mediasite account, follow the steps in: Help! Desktop Recorder will not upload my video to the server.
If MDR is still failing to register you as a user, contact us through the IT Service Desk.
The first thing to check is the top left corner of the Mediasite Desktop Recorder (MDR) window. Does it show your staff number? If it doesn't, this will show the words "Register to Sign In" – see the screenshot below:
If your staff number is not shown, the software is not registered to you as a user. You just need to:
You may see a few security messages from your browser, checking that you want to open up the link using Mediasite Desktop Recorder. You can allow these.
If MDR still fails to upload your presentation, contact us through the IT Service Desk.
My Mediasite is the online portal to which staff users have access. If you have signed up, you will find a link to the portal in your Queen's Online quicklinks.
My Mediasite is the centre of your Mediasite content management. Any videos you create (or which someone has shared with you) will be accessible here, to review, edit, set security access, obtain links and, if necessary, delete. Here is a detailed rundown of the main functions available:
For more information on how to use My Mediasite, see our Training and Support page.
As a Mediasite user, you have your own drafts folder. Any content you create using Mediasite Desktop Recorder or upload to My Mediasite will be placed here. The drafts folder is private, and any content residing in it will be inaccessible to other users, unless you manually change security settings on each video.
To make it easier to set permissions on video content, and to provide central locations for content to be managed (such as for an individual teaching module), we provide shared folders. These are set up with the permissions required for the right people (e.g. only students and staff) to be able to view the content within. By moving your content to one of these shared folders and ensuring that the security permissions are "inherited" from the shared folder, you can easily:
Shared folders can be created on request by the Mediasite admin team. To request access to an existing shared folder or to request the creation of new folders, file a ticket using the IT Service Desk. Make sure to provide your specific requirements, e.g.:
Folder for module ABC9999 in the School of EEECS
Viewing access: students and staff only
Editing access: myself, Joe Bloggs and Jane Doe.
Your "favourite" shared folders are shown on the left hand side of the My Mediasite interface. If you don't see your folder present here, click on the Shared Folders heading and you will see all of the folders to which you have access.
Clicking on the name of each folder will display the contents of that folder.
On the right of each listed folder is a button labelled Favourite. You can select/deselect whichever folders you wish and they will then appear in the quick list on the left side.
The most common reasons for a video/presentation not being visible to other people are where:
To set the security settings on a video to inherit from the shared folder:
The two most likely errors are:
The URL, or web address, that you share with your viewers is a direct link to view the video. It should look like:
If it does not look like the above link, it is incorrect. For instance, you might have mistakenly copied the My Mediasite URL from your browser address bar. This would only send a viewer to the editing/details page for the video, and is inaccessible to anyone without a Mediasite user account.
The correct link can be obtained from My Mediasite by doing the following:
The link can then be pasted into an email, a website, or whatever media you are using to propogate the video.
Note: When a presentation/video is set as "private", this setting overrides all security settings. So no one will ever be able to watch the video if it is set to private, regardless of your security settings or whether it is in a shared folder.
By default, when content is uploaded, it is set to private. This is to avoid making content visible before you have reviewed it for errors. To ensure that the video is available for people to watch, you need to set it to viewable. There are two ways to set this in My Mediasite:
Firstly, have a think about whether you need to download your presentation or not. It may be that simply sharing a link to your presentation on Mediasite (or embedding it) will be better for you. The advantages of just sharing or embedding your Mediasite presentation from the server, include:
There are also a few points to note about the downloadable format. When requested, Mediasite generates a static video file, which is referred to in Mediasite as a vodcast. This is in an easily transferable format, for you to download. Because this is just a single video file:
If you are downloading in order to transfer to YouTube or similar video service, please see Why not just use YouTube, Vimeo, etc.?
So, in general, we recommend against downloading the presentation where possible, but we do recognise that in some circumstances you may wish to do so.
After waiting for the vodcast file to be generated; from within My Mediasite:
If you contact us within 90 days of deletion of a presentation, it should be possible for us to retrieve it. File a ticket on the IT Service Desk with details (ideally the full title of the video and any other known information) and we will try our best to get the content back.
After 90 days, content that has been deleted will be permanently removed from the system.
Canvas is the new virtual learning environment (VLE) for Queen's. Mediasite is integrated into Canvas, so you can manage your Mediasite content and add videos to your courses without leaving the Canvas interface. It also has the benefit of not using up your limited storage space on the Canvas server.
For instructions on how to use Mediasite within Canvas, see the Mediasite in Canvas Guide on the Canvas team's blog.
It depends on what you want to record:
Numerous studies have looked into the link between lecture capture and attendance. Some, like Nordmann, Calder, Bishop, Irwin & Comber (2017), found “no evidence for a negative effect of recording use, or that attendance and recording use were related” while others such as Edwards & Clinton (2018), found that the “availability of lecture capture is associated with a drop in attendance”. It should be noted that the latter study was over a three-lecture setting, while the former was a four-year study.
What most studies agree on, however, is that:
Nordmann, Emily & McGeorge, Peter. (2018). Lecture capture in higher education: time to learn from the learners.
Edwards, M.R. & Clinton, M.E. High Educ (2018). A study exploring the impact of lecture capture availability and lecture capture usage on student attendance and attainment.
The short answer is yes, you do. To obtain proof of this permission, get the participants in the recording to sign a release form. This is available from Video Production.
In more detail:
Groups of people / audiences:
If you have any legal queries regarding content, contact the Video Production team.
Jisc (formerly the Joint Information Systems Committee) has produced this detailed guidance: Recording lectures: legal considerations
Copyright is an important issue. The term 'educational use' unfortunately is not a license to use any content you like, and while some content may be available for review and critique purposes, is by no means a catch-all solution. This applies to many kinds of media, including still images, video footage and audio recordings.
If you need to find content for use in your presentations that can be used legally and featured in recorded videos on Mediasite (or elsewhere), a wealth of media can be found online under the Creative Commons (CC) agreements. Still images, for instance, can be found through the Creative Commons image serach, as well as Google's advanced image search, Flickr and many other sources that categorise media by their CC agreements. It is worth noting that some agreements require you to attribute the content to its original creator, which can be done easily and discreetly in your presentation, and is generally good practice anyway.
If wish to use existing media such as infographics, diagrams, music, video etc. that are not published under CC agreements, quite often a simple email to the owner, seeking permission for their use, may be all that is required.
If you have any queries, contact the Video Production team.
British Universities Film and Video Council runs courses on this area
It is up to the presenter to ensure that they have written permission from:
It is up to the person recording to ensure that the presenter has signed a release form which outlines where permission has not been obtained for copying and showing the recorded presentation elsewhere. This is available from .
In some cases, permission may only have been obtained for a closed group of people to be able to watch the presentation after recording – in which case, the presentation will require specific security settings on the Mediasite server. File a ticket on the IT Service Desk if you need support with this.
If permission has not been obtained for the above, or if there is any uncertainty, edit out or add a watermark to obscure the sections in question, using the My Mediasite web video editor.
Mediator was formerly Queen's University's video streaming server, and the predecessor to the current Mediasite service. The Mediasite server was introduced in 2015, and Mediator was eventually decommissioned in 2018.
Any files still on the Mediator system were backed up by the Video Production team before decommissioning. If you have videos/media that were on the Mediator server and need to be retrieved, contact Video Production.
Queen's University Belfast is committed to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.
For more information please read our Equality and Diversity Policy.
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