What multimedia tools are available?

This section provides an overview on delivering and creating course multimedia using pedagogical best practices with technologies supported by the Division of Information Technology (DOIT) and the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL).

An advantage of delivering course materials online is that media other than a printed textbook can be used to explain content. Media such as videos and podcasts provide variety for the senses and maintain the interest of students. There are also multimedia technologies that add layers of interaction such as multimedia discussion boards and interactive videos.

There are two ways to add multimedia to your course: 1. Find resources available online that complement and enhance your course. 2. Create your own multimedia and allow your students to create it as an integral part of their assignments. The choice of whether or not to add multimedia content and tools depends on the learning goals of the course and if it is possible to integrate media in a thoughtful way.

Choosing the right tool

Although it is possible to upload multimedia materials (ie: video, audio) directly into Blackboard, it is not recommended. Students need to have the appropriate programs on their computers to open them. Plus, multimedia files are often large and difficult to download. These multimedia tools are all designed to stream content online, either by uploading files or direct recordings, and some make advanced interaction with multimedia possible. 

Discussion Audio Video
VoiceThread X X X

Stream video with Kaltura

You can create or upload video to Kaltura to share with specific individuals, your course roster or publicly. All video file types can be uploaded and large files are acceptable. A Kaltura library can be configured for students to upload files and instructors can view students’ contributions privately or share with the whole class. Students and instructors can create a simple video, audio, and screen recording directly in the program but it does not offer major editing features.

Make interactive videos with Kaltura

Using Kaltura you can create and share interactive video lessons in your Blackboard course or any online location of your choice via an embed code. There are several different types of question types available for your in-video quiz including multiple-choice, free response, polling, and a reflective pause.

Create multimedia discussions in VoiceThread

VoiceThread is a tool you can use to create a discussion that is linked to a multimedia item such as a PowerPoint, short video, or song. Students can comment on the item and talk to each other by voice, video, or text. Students can create their own VoiceThread as well. 

Creative Commons License

Flexible Teaching guides were developed by Duke Learning Innovation and adapted for NIU by the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning. They are shared under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Hybrid Course Delivery

Are you planning to deliver a hybrid course? Learn more tips for designing and delivering a hybrid class.

Guide to Hybrid Course Delivery


Didn’t find what you were looking for? Need more information? Contact the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) with your feedback and questions about this resource.

Workshops & Support

CITL staff are available to answer your questions about Flexible Teaching. Give us a call or text 815-753-0595 or email citl@niu.edu for assistance. You can also schedule an appointment with one of our staff.

View CITL upcoming events to view available upcoming workshops offered or to register.

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