Media Commons 101

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On June 15th, Nick Smerker, our traveling Media Commons Consultant, spent a day on campus updating us on the Media Commons (MC) resources, projects, support, and new offerings. A summary of those updates is provided here. If you would like to stay current with Media Commons happenings, connect with them on Twitter @psumc or Facebook http://www.facebook.com/psumediacommons.

Resources: Equipment, Space, People

The equipment resources available to lend/use from our MC includes HD camcorders, Flip cameras (which are being gradually replaced by Sony Bloggie Touch and iPod Touch), digital still cameras, lighting and backdrops, wireless lavalieres, podcasting kits, and iMacs for editing. The loanable equipment will be available at the library's circulation desk, and can be loaned for a period of three days.

The studio and editing spaces have moved from W344 Olmsted to various places throughout our campus. The future "home" will be in W7 Olmsted, but there are already various spaces in the library that are available. Most notable are the whisper rooms located on the first floor just past the circulation desk. Besides University Park, we are the only campus with these special booths available for podcasting. They can be reserved just as group study rooms are reserved by using a link available at the library's website (http://www.libraries.psu.edu/psul/harrisburg/about.html). All equipment and spaces are free to use for all Penn State faculty, staff and students.

MC support staff are available by hotline and email. All contact information is available at http://mediacommons.psu.edu/support. Nick's travel schedule and contact information is available at http://mediacommons.psu.edu/commonwealth/. He will provide consultation for faculty planning media projects, and is available by request for in-class training for students, and for faculty and staff workshops.

Projects
Nick shared a number of examples of faculty and class projects grouped as follows:
  • Community Film/Documentary
  • Health Care Training
  • Social Issues/News Broadcasting
  • Educational Storytelling
  • Technology Analysis
  • Advertising
  • Educational Development
Examples of faculty projects are available at http://mediacommons.psu.edu/faculty.

Support
Recommendations were made for building a project with the MC. Gearing up for Fall, these are the steps to take:
  • Conceptualize Your Project (now - mid-August)
  • Contact Nick Smerker, our MC Consultant (mid-July - mid-August)
  • Media Commons Training (September - December)
    • One session: MC General Studies or class visit
    • Multiple sessions: video/audio basics, iMovie/GarageBand, review and critique
    • Follow-up sessions as needed
There are multiple avenues of support available via the MC hotline, online, and live help from campus staff (see http://mediacommons.psu.edu/support). The MC website provides tutorials, video training, storage space (select "Manage MC Storage" from the left-hand menu), a link to the Creative Commons Media Library, and live chat. There are also "Project Backup" tutorials available to learn to use MC Storage.

New Offerings
Media Commons is running a Mobile Media Pilot, and the Faculty Center's submission has been approved. We will be receiving devices pre-loaded with media creation software for our World Wide Narratives project.

Another new offering is their One Button Studio that provides an easy and efficient process for presentation practice/recording, studio recording, lecture capture, and video recording. It is currently being piloted at University Park, but there are plans to try and provide the equipment on a cart so it can be available in multiple locations within our library. Great interest has been shown by our speech faculty.

Finally, the Educational Gaming Commons (EGC) works closely with the MC, and is looking for faculty interested in building games and game-like elements into their courses. Current projects can be viewed here http://gaming.psu.edu/Projects.

TLT Tech
Nick also mentioned some initiatives sponsored by TLT. The Faculty Center has held various workshops on these, and can provide some support for their use: NBC Learn, Blogs @ PSU, and VoiceThread. Please be in touch.

The interest shown by faculty and staff at MC 101 indicates some interesting new multimedia projects about to be born this Fall!

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