Hi Udemy team!
I’m a Udemy instructor and have been one since 2018. I’ve been working on a slew of courses to get out hopefully in the next month or so.
One thing I’ve noticed is that I am technologically inept and it really shows. I have a real problem with when I’m in the middle of teaching a lesson and some part of the software I use or something in my setup goes wonky causing the quality of courses to be very low in my opinion. Why is this a problem? Because the technology problems really distract me from what I am teaching, causing me to draw blanks, even sometimes in mid-sentence.
Do I have to make a script to follow? That’ll add another step to the process, but I don’t know. It may be the best thing to do for when I get distracted.
I’ve had the issue some on Udemy and definitely with another site called TakeLessons. I’ve had audio and video problems on Zoom recently too. I’m to the point that I almost don’t want to do the online course creation because I can’t go a time without something going out or wrong. When I am teaching, I need to concentrate on this—not whether the technology is working properly or not. Yes, I do check all my connections and things to make sure everything is secure and working before the lesson, but during the lesson, it acts up.
I’m also saddened that I’m almost driven away from creating the online courses because it’s a prime opportunity for me to give my musical knowledge to students around the world. I do teach in-person music lessons at a few studios around where I live. I’m thinking, “Should I just be limited to teaching that way or are there some ways to get inspired to create courses again?”
I am currently enrolled in a Udemy course on how to use Microsoft Teams as the TakeLessons site either uses it or a Zoom link. I’m hoping Microsoft Teams would be easier to use… I know this is a mixed bag of ranting and asking questions. How do you instructors handle this?
It's hard @CodyWeinman104 . I won't lie to you.
I've produced several courses already and you'd think I figured everything out by now.
But every time I find some new challenge.
You just deal with it. Learn from it and move on.
If every idiot could easily do it, we wouldn't be making any money on this platform.
a few thoughts: "I think I am technologically inept and it shows." I think that to some extent, we as teachers should lead by example when it comes to learning and improving our own skills. What would you tell a student if they told you "Well, I'm just not good at writing music"? I can imagine your answer would be something like "Well, you can learn!"
Also, concerning: "I have a real problem with when I’m in the middle of teaching a lesson and some part of the software I use or something in my setup goes wonky causing the quality of courses to be very low in my opinion." From my personal experience, recording a lesson multiple times until it is of good quality or improving your editing skills up to a point where you are able to edit the video properly is absolutely crucial for creating a good online course. This is also why it takes many instructors several months to create and release an online course.
And ultimately, concerning your question “Should I just be limited to teaching that way or are there some ways to get inspired to create courses again?”. The answer is: No, you should not be limited. You just need to be willing to put in the work. Other teachers (like myself) were not born tech-savvy. We made ourselves become it.
Offering online courses does not require any technical skill, but being successful with it surely does. Having a poor setup can indeed be distracting to students and to me personally, it also looks kind of lazy, so it would definitely affect the image I have of that teacher.
However, you don't have to be super tech-savvy to make improvements to your video quality. For example, I use an iPhone to record myself, I use the built-in screen recording feature of my Mac to record the screen while I talk, two easy-to-use microphones, and MOST IMPORTANTLY for me: a teleprompter (game changer for me). I also write a script and cut my videos in iMovie to make my talking sound more fluent (currently starting to use Final Cut to be more flexible, but this is not necessary). This is a super simple setup, which I built up over the years, and while I know that other instructors use a way more advanced setup, I know it works for me and my students.
Looking at your videos, for me personally, the quality would be too low to pay for it. We as teachers need to understand that the market for online courses is super huge and competition is tough, especially with YouTube and other platforms offering high-quality videos for free about the exact same topics that we teach.
As a fellow instructor, I recommend 1) making YouTube your best friend and searching for tutorials on how to fix the single parts of your setup (i.e. how to use a proper microphone, how to improve lighting , how to use simple editing software like iMovie to cut and edit videos etc.), 2) definitely write a script, work on your keynote presentation design and layout, and find a lighter, nicer spot to record your videos in. These are three quick fixes that can really make a difference and that you don't need to be tech-savvy for!
Wishing you all the best on your journey!
Maybe you are expecting yourself to record too much in one “take” or recording. Maybe break it up to 10 minute recordings.
I use zoom to record and you mentioned zoom. When I experience a hiccup, I immediately end session and put the video clip in iMovies with a fade to black transition and tree with music. I edit to where I completed a section, or place I could begin again easily. Then on my next “take” I begin where the edit left off.
When we are hyperaroused we can’t create well, or bring that A game we give in person, so practice calming exercises before you make another attempt. Drink water, go outdoors, listen to music. It doesn’t sound like you are technologically challenged. You sound human.