Screencasting provides the exciting possibility of individualized learning both within the context of the classroom and the greater on-line community. Teachers can create resources that students can access in their own time and at their own pace. Students can demonstrate their understanding through audio and visual modes in school or at a distance.
Screencasting also allows students to become actively involved in their own teaching and learning. It gives them the air time they cannot always get in a class of 20 students. Research suggests that students need to explain their learning to cement understanding, but an 80 minute period only gives each student 4 minutes to talk if the entire class is dedicated to student explanation.
High School courses rely heavily on written expression as a way to show understanding. For some students, this makes the educational process, which should be exciting, burdensome. The ability to interact verbally can reduce this burden and allow these students to focus on deepening their understanding of the concepts.
Furthermore, screencasts allow shy students, students who process information slowly, perfectionists ESL students etc. time to collect their ideas. They can rehearse their comments before addressing the class or teacher. In fact, students can record over their original podcast if they wish to make improvements. One caution is that these same students are prone to spend entirely too much time this type of assignment. Participation in class is confined to the classroom whereas a screencast can eat up many hours after school. However, students often feel the satisfactory performance is worth the time spent.
Screencasts add to the variety of learning resources available which makes teaching and learning a more dynamic process. Screencasts add personalization, visualization, and voice which are powerful components of any instructional program.