Tips to create course faster

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Tips to create course faster

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Course creation takes a lot of time and sometimes being productive is hard. I would really like to know from all the instructors how do you stay focused and productive? What kind of schedule do you follow to complete courses? Your guidance would really be helpful. Thanks.

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Re: Tips to create course faster

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Hi @ShubhiSaxena 

Making a realistic schedule and sticking to it is important. There are many steps to producing a course and what has worked for me in the past is to mix and match all the different steps so I'm not always doing the same thing for an extended period of time. 

For example, you could record 7-10 hours of content over 2 days, then edit it over a couple of days, then upload everything to Udemy the next day, then publish your course. Personally, I like to record 2-3 hours at max, then spend the afternoon editing (during my lunch break, the computer creates my proxy files so I don't have to waste time waiting for that to happen). In the evening my computer exports all the videos while I sleep, directly to a Dropbox folder, which uploads by itself while I sleep. Then in the morning, I load those videos in Udemy using the bulk uploader and while the videos are getting converted by Udemy, I record my next 2-3 hours of video. 

Getting more proficient at editing will also save you a ton of time. I used to spend 4-5 hours to edit 1 hour of content. Now that my process is more streamlined, I spend about 2 hours to edit 1 hour of content. Big time saver! 

What are your main issues or bigger time wasters at this point in the process? 

Greg Reverdiau - Airplane and Drone Training

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@GregReverdiau Thanks for offering a detailed solution. Batching the work would definitely be a good thing for me as you suggest.

Currently the biggest issue is that things get delayed. I do a task then suddenly another task seems important so I end up doing less. 

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Great question! I don't really have a set schedule, but I try to do at least something for my new courses every day, even when I'm on vacation. That might be some programming for a lecture, making slides, taking notes or writing scripts, or filming or editing. I notice that if I take a few days off, it get progressively harder to get back into it. That helps keep me in the right frame of mind.

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Re: Tips to create course faster

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Hi @ShubhiSaxena 

Making a realistic schedule and sticking to it is important. There are many steps to producing a course and what has worked for me in the past is to mix and match all the different steps so I'm not always doing the same thing for an extended period of time. 

For example, you could record 7-10 hours of content over 2 days, then edit it over a couple of days, then upload everything to Udemy the next day, then publish your course. Personally, I like to record 2-3 hours at max, then spend the afternoon editing (during my lunch break, the computer creates my proxy files so I don't have to waste time waiting for that to happen). In the evening my computer exports all the videos while I sleep, directly to a Dropbox folder, which uploads by itself while I sleep. Then in the morning, I load those videos in Udemy using the bulk uploader and while the videos are getting converted by Udemy, I record my next 2-3 hours of video. 

Getting more proficient at editing will also save you a ton of time. I used to spend 4-5 hours to edit 1 hour of content. Now that my process is more streamlined, I spend about 2 hours to edit 1 hour of content. Big time saver! 

What are your main issues or bigger time wasters at this point in the process? 

Greg Reverdiau - Airplane and Drone Training

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Re: Tips to create course faster

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@GregReverdiau Thanks for offering a detailed solution. Batching the work would definitely be a good thing for me as you suggest.

Currently the biggest issue is that things get delayed. I do a task then suddenly another task seems important so I end up doing less. 

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That seems to be a typical issue for most people. The key is to prioritize your work so your time spent putting out fires is minimized. Easier said than done! I think Stephen Covey is the one who talks about this in his 7 habits book. 

Greg Reverdiau - Airplane and Drone Training
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Here, check this article out. Look at the discussion about quadrants, this may help you. If you don’t have the book, it’s a good buy, cheap on Amazon. 

https://www.forbes.com/sites/ericjackson/2012/07/24/the-only-thing-you-need-to-remember-about-the-se...

Greg Reverdiau - Airplane and Drone Training
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Yes that needs to be done. You are right. Thanks for mentioning the book, I'll surely look into it because being productive is number 1 priority as of now. Thanks again!

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@GregReverdiau I love this! I did my first course recently (published on Friday, so I'm about to embark on a week of promoting it through various means - wish me luck!) and I was chewing over a solid workflow for my next one.

I was thinking something similar, but a little different:

-Pre-Produce all my lectures and sort out my talking points (I've never liked presenting with a finished script. Bullet points FTW), outlining what next steps I'll be finishing each lecture with.
-Film everything over a single day (2 if needed).

-Offload footage, backing up and transcoding overnight.

-Then aim to edit a bunch of V1 drafts, ready for my business partner to have a read of (benefit of having another set of eyes) each day - batch exporting these (To google drive - love your Dropbox idea Greg!) with Media Encoder.

-Start each edit day with any changes to existing edits, then queue up to Google Drive, ready for Bulk uploading and also getting Rev.com ready to go for captioning. I'll be processing these as soon as each edit is signed off.
-Eventually all of my lectures should kind of be there within a couple of days to a week (depending on what other stuff I've got in my calendar that week.)

Any thoughts as to how I can improve this anyone? I'm hoping to save myself a tonne of processing time in not shooting the whole thing in 4k (Yeah, that was a bit silly last time) but any feedback from more experienced minds would be super welcome!

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Thanks a lot Greg, this is very helpful. I'd like to ask you a "technical" tip: which kind of batch system do you use? For example, I'm editing my videos with Adobe Premiere but I had to edit them one by one before exporting. Is there a way to batch this process?
Alessandro Calonego - Graphic Designer

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Alessandro, if you're using Premiere, check out Media Encoder (it comes with it, with Creative Cloud) to batch export videos.

When you go to your export window at the end of editing a video, hit 'queue' instead of export, and it'll open Media Encoder up. From there you can add as many videos as you like to the list before hitting the little 'go' button at the top. It'll even adjust its processing power depending on what else you're doing on your computer at the time, so it's working away in the background! Clever stuff Smiley Happy

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Thanks a lot Nick: ok I'll use media encoder as you suggest!

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Make sure you have a filming 'studio' set up so that you can walk in and start filming whenever you are ready...

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That's quite productive indeed. Thanks for the tip!

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If only I had a room in this apartment in DC. I hear you on that though. I'm getting quite good at setting up my green screen in a small place and getting the ligthing just right.

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Re: Tips to create course faster

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Great question! I don't really have a set schedule, but I try to do at least something for my new courses every day, even when I'm on vacation. That might be some programming for a lecture, making slides, taking notes or writing scripts, or filming or editing. I notice that if I take a few days off, it get progressively harder to get back into it. That helps keep me in the right frame of mind.

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@MikeXCohen  That's true. Taking a break actually makes it difficult but doing a little consistently day by day is definitely a good way to keep making courses.

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I'm very new to this whole formal teaching thing but I think I am finally getting a groove. I have taught before online but nothing formal or paid so I wasn't as concerned about all the small details. I digress..

 

I would love to do the batch processing thing except I tend to do some research, then talk. Then research, then talk. So, because of this, I only batch record a few videos at a time. Actually, let me step back. 

 

My newest method I just started and love so far is this:

  1. I have a written script of what I am going to say ahead of time prepared. Maybe just 8-15 paragraphs worth. I record myself talking through the script without the camera, errors and all (I can edit those out). The key is to talk a bit slow and create natural breaks.
  2. Then, I start diagraming or creating slides for my script if I already didn't have them in the script. I'm actually editing the content now. 
  3. Finally, I will green screen myself talking about what I talked about behind the scenes. So, as I edit, I learn more or realized I needed to add something else. This is where I would switch to "me" on camera and just talk it. Then I splice it in. 

So far, I really think this method is going to be my winner.

 

One slow down for me is that I switch between a Mac and a PC alot. I love the Mac but certain things I am just faster at with Windows on a PC.

 

Like I said, I am very new but enjoying the ride so far. Good luck. 

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@mtgingrass Thanks for sharing your method it's really helpful. 

 

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I do nearly the same as @GregReverdiau regarding a schedule; although mine looks different as I have an FT job as well:

 

  • Film 3-5 hours at a time, I have done 8 the latter is a bad idea if you want quality.  3-5 hours of "tape" 2-4 hours of useful material for me.
  • Next week or a few days later I edit it all of it, my editing is basic (maybe too basic tbh) so that's 1:2, one hour for every 2 filmed so 6-10 hours later all done
  • I upload as I go in these bulk sets so that's usually a large chunk of my course overnight and hope my wifi doesn't fail me.  It usually does so I then upload the last of it in the morning or hit up a co-working space by the day- well worth the $20 for free coffee (& beer!) and fiber speeds!
  • During the week I engage in social media, type landing page info, etc.
  • Repeat this 3-4xs over a month or two and viola a new 4-6 hour course!
  • Watch entire course before going live, I often submit and keep private for a week to tweak and have select students in "early" to give feedback and build some hype

It total does help to have a home studio, saves me 1-2 hours to not have to set up now.  

 

What motivates me? Let me be real, I can't stand editing, seeing my face and hearing my voice for HOURS is painful and I mean in a cringe, why did I do that, why is my hair a mess, etc, so I am quick to film, edit and have a live course up to generate revenue.  Yes, money and enrollment motivate me to complete a quality course quickly and on schedule.  I also update my social media accounts and students with a launch date early on.  It makes me stick to a schedule.  Right now I have 10 days to complete my next course; 10 hours unedited, 5 more to film and I can see the sweet sweet finish line!!!

Alicia Paz M.A, QMHP
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@AliciaPaz  That's really useful. Batching definitely works well. When we keep the course private and then make it public, does it affect the way the course earns the badges? 

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Nope and as others do by adding to private and having established students who know your teaching style aka current students when you change to public you have a bunch of great feedback, hopefully, rockin' reviews and can immediately qualify for hot & new! I only keep private for a week or two at most because I am eager for more sales, but others mention keeping it there longer.  

Alicia Paz M.A, QMHP
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this is a great question. My favourite motto is "Eat the elephant one bite at a time". For me that means instead of being overwhelmed by all you have to do, just concentrate on one thing - do that until it's done! This has helped me alot especially when I am not feeling motivated.

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Re: Tips to create course faster

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Hi Shubhi, 

It a great question. Staying on track is important. When off track,  better to come back quickly. 

Since you need to be creative whileaking content a break also serves as a breather.  

This is how I stay focussed :

Categorize and break your course creation task. Mine are :

1) Outline,  research, Script writing

2) video shoots,  screen recordings, audio files. 

3) editing 

4) prepare downloads in PDF. 

 

I take up things in batch.  I complete point 1 and point 4 simultaneously.  I complete the scripting first. Mark the lecture numbers also. So redo is avoided  while recording. 

Mostly first I  make my own outline.  This keeps my content original. Then do the research and improve it. 

Keep adding parts to the main outline. 

 

Only once this step is complete I start recording. I record everything in a batch again,  mark and save my files to edit in batch for next week. 

 

 

Right now, for me it takes time. I follow a tight scripting schedule.  For e. g.  lecture 1  to be finished by (date)

This has to be done to stay productive.  Since we are our own boss.  By following this it's easier for me to be productive. I can easily script for two to three lectures ( 10 minutes each)   in a weeks time. So in two months 8-12 lectures can be scripted. 

You could just do one in a week and see it will start becoming easier. Sometimes it's just the load of work that needs to be done bogs us down. So little steps are also good to be productive. 

After scripting I take 3 days for recording and a week's time for editing. I rerun everything again before producing.  So another 3 days.  Udemy has a template for video editing.  It's quite a help. 

On the days I do not feel creative,  I simply research and find myself writing in an hour or so.... Smiley Happy

 

Hope it helps. 

Ekta Smiley Happy

 

 

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