Using Video Capture Technology to Improve Public Speaking Skills – A Confidence Builder and Motivator for Student Learning
Hong Kong Baptist University
Hong Kong Baptist University includes public speaking as a core component in its General Education Curriculum. This ensures each student gains, keeps up and improves his/her public speaking skills. Despite perhaps subdued enthusiasm from students, most recognize that public speaking is an essential skill in any personal, social and work context. Indeed, public speaking focuses on the sharing of thoughts and ideas, while communication is, of course, the backbone of society
To help improve presenting and communication skills, video capture technology has been adopted in the public speaking component. Students are required to present three graded speeches in a semester. Deploying the video capture system en bloc, all speeches are recorded and uploaded onto the learning management system (LMS), facilitating students to review their own performance. To further enhance the effectiveness of using video as part of the learning process, a proper feedback process is in place. Students are required to arrange a one-on-one consultation with their lecturer. During this consultation, the lecturer reviews the clip along with the student and provides highly individualized comments and suggestions.
This teaching and learning method is deemed effective as the entire team of lecturers in the public speaking component observed that students gained confidence with themselves and their speeches got better as they progressed through their assessment tasks. On average a student improves his/her grade by 15% (approximately a full grade up) from the first to the third speech. Students have also provided favorable feedback in the teaching evaluation as well as in a deliberately setup focus group interview conducted in 2015. Students found the review and feedback process to be highly valuable in helping to improve their public speaking skills, alleviate their anxieties so that they become more confident with themselves, and most importantly, as they see their speeches getting better, they are motivated to do and learn more to achieve higher standards.