Why choose video delivery on your university intranet?

 Intranet delivery of your video resources is easy

  • You can upload directly from your DVD.
  • Or, if you need a different format such as MP4 or WMV, then we can organise this for you.

Intranet video delivery - Q&A with Daniel Bailey

We posed a number of frequently asked questions regarding intranet use of Nicholas and Smith training DVDs to Daniel Bailey, Senior Lecturer, University of Northampton, Department of Engineering. Here's what Daniel had to say ...
 Trinity College Dublin

Q. What are the benefits of intranet delivery of video in universities?

A. Wide access to learning material is becoming evermore important to all our teaching provision.  Students are relying more and more on intranet-based learning resources such as journal databases etc.  Having the intranet-based DVD material available to our students has a number of benefits, these include:
  • Providing a equal learning experience for our students.  The Intranet-based material enables access to all students, not just those who are able to visit the University in person.  This is particularly relevant to our Lift engineering courses, in particular the MSc in Lift Engineering, which have large proportions of overseas students.
  • Students can also access the material at a time, which suits them, not just during class time or when they are able to obtain the DVD copy from the Library.
  • Long-term security of the material is improved with the intranet-based format, as there is no DVD to be loaned out, which may result in loss or damage.

Q. What are the benefits of this type of delivery for both the lecturers and the students?

A. Having a well produced audiovisual tool, which provides a very clear explanation of the topic in question, using industrial examples drawn from a wide range of sectors, is of great benefit to both the student and lecturer.  We have found that using this material has aided students to understand the importance of the topic and thus take a greater interest.  This has led overall to better student performance.  For the lecturer the benefits are many,  for example:
  • The DVD and supporting material provides a sound concise structure for each topic which can be used as the basis for further development.
  • The explanation of the industry relevance by ‘real’ companies provides gravitas to the topic in question.

Q. How do staff and students access the university intranet service?

A. All staff and students enrolled on a course with the University of Northampton, have access to NILE (Northampton Interactive Learning Environment).  To gain access to NILE a University logon and password is required.  NILE has many functions, a key one being the ability to post lecture material and audio material for Student use.  For the intranet-based material we can also set an additional password, which provides extended security.


Q. Do you ask students to view the DVDs before class, or do you deliver and facilitate this material in class?

A. The DVD is largely self-explanatory and students would gain from viewing this material in isolation.  However, we have found the learning experience is enhanced when the DVD and supporting material is facilitated by lecturing staff within a group environment.  This enables discussion and the opportunity to exchange experiences.  However, with the flexibility of the intranet-based material students can re-visit the material with easy or view prior to the lecture, both of which will assist them with their studies.


Q. As the number of distance learning students’ increase, do you believe intranet delivery will play an essential part in the provision of course material?

A. Within the Division of Engineering, intranet based delivery plays an increasingly important role within our distance learning courses.  As the technology to access web-based material becomes more widespread and effective, we see intranet-based provision becoming the backbone to this method of provision. 


Q. Have you had feedback from students with regards to the use of these DVDs?

A. We have not kept records of individual comment, however, the broad range of positive feedback from students across a range of our courses, including the BSc Engineering and MSc Lift Engineering, gave us the confidence to expand our range of topics covered and purchase the intranet-based material.


Q. Can students download the supplementary study guides that accompany the training DVDs?

A. Students accessing the intranet-based material via NILE, providing they have the relevant passwords can download the study guide material.


Q. How would you like to see intranet delivery improve further?

A. Intranet delivery has many advantages to the student, with regard to availability and access to the learning material.  One area, which could be improved, is the use of this material to instigate discussion and debate.  Most students learn better in group environments and whilst they may partake in debate in a face-to-face situation they may not be as keen to in a virtual environment.  This situation is likely to improve as the ‘Facebook’ and ‘Twitter’ generations dominate.


Q. Finally, what advice would you give to lecturers who are looking to use intranet as a means of delivering their training DVDs?

A. Taking the step to use intranet-based material is a significant one, as there are a number of considerations, both academic and more practical in nature.  From an academic point of view I think it is important to thoroughly consider which topics would be best supported by the material, for example we have found the ISO:9001 2008 DVD to have great benefit, as students often have little experience in this area and can find it difficult to understand using purely written material.  From a practical perspective, you need to find out the capabilities of the intranet service provision, for example the file format which can be supported, the likely quality, my knowledge of this was limited, but fortunately our IT services department was very co-operative and dealt directly with Nicholas and Smith,  Finally consider the cost, it is worth undertaking a pilot study to assist the validation of the expenditure, we did and this proved very useful in assessing the relevance and value to the material to our students.