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Recording PowerPoint presentations with UCP

First of all get your PowerPoint presentation ready to record. This guidance from MIT Alumni is quite comprehensive and gives some useful tips for formatting your presentation:

My personal advice would be to remove any transitions or animations from your presentation as these will slow it down and can make the recording process more complicated. It is much easier to record audio for a slide if you have everything on the screen in front of you; sections of text flying in can distract you and make it is easy to forget what you were going to say.

You will need to record your presentation in slideshow view so you will not be able to view any notes you may have produced. Either have the notes displayed on another device, or print them off so that you can refer to them when you need to.

Close all other programmes on your computer; particularly email applications that might have notifications that could appear on the screen. If you have a managed computer make sure you have updated any software and there are no updates pending, as these dialogue boxes will appear in the recording interface and do not look very professional.

Turn off mobile (and office) phones and record in a quiet room where you will not be disturbed.

Use a headset to record your audio as these cancel out background noise and generally produce a better quality recording. Make sure you have these plugged in before you open the UCP software.

Login to UCP via the Echo360 button. It will open a webpage which you need to leave minimised and the recording interface. Recording is undertaken locally and the files are then added to your library on the Echo360 database which you access via the webpage.

Give your recording a title by clicking on the Capture Details dialogue box (the pencil icon) at the top left of the interface. You should include the title of the presentation and the date of the recording in the title. On the left hand side of the screen you should see your PowerPoint presentation displayed. If not choose Display 1 from the left hand drop down menu. If you want to record yourself talking via your webcam, choose it from the drop down menu on the right, otherwise choose No input from the right hand menu.

Universal Capture: Personal recording interface

The audio input is located in the middle of the screen and the scale should be fluctuating if it is picking up your audio. If it is not then click on the down arrow next to the microphone icon and choose your audio input device from the dropdown list. If you have plugged your microphone in after opening the software, you may have to restart the software for it to appear on the list.

The pink button at the bottom of the screen is the record/stop button.

When you are ready to record click the record button. You will then see a count down on the screen for five seconds, in which time you need to switch windows and launch your presentation in slideshow view. If this takes more than five seconds, whatever you are doing will be recorded but this can be removed later. Deliver your presentation as you would normally.

Exit slideshow view in PowerPoint and go back into the UCP interface. Click the stop button to stop recording. Inevitably this will not be a smooth process and you will record tabs/software minimising or closing but again this can be removed later.

Your Echo360 Library is the default publishing location when first using UCP, afterwards it will remember the last publishing location chosen and default to that.