|Screenshot for setting up "The Settlers of Catan" using Clarify, http://www.clarify-it.com/|
I've found creating tutorials using screenshots, search tips and step by step instructions and posting them online can provide a good option for people to learn at their own pace on their own time (a lot like this course).
I'm often surprised how time consuming this can be, taking screenshots, preparing the technical step by step instructions (technical writing has never been my strength) and in some cases recording audio or video live as you demonstrate the resource.
Value of Professional Networking:
So the great thing about working in the library world is that whatever resource you are preparing to create a tutorial on, chances are another library or in some cases the vendor for that resource may have already created a guide. Take a look around other library sites, search for something like Ebsco Small Business Reference Center tips or tutorials, see what you find. I've gone as far as contacting a library and asking if they will share their resource so I can modify it for our library and as many librarians have been willing to do this, I always return the favor. Making a few changes to a guide is a lot less time consuming than building one from scratch. That is as long as you find one that you feel is well done and easy for a user to understand.
For example, I was preparing for an ebook open house and had just seen some great handouts that Jean Powell at the Wasilla Meta-Rose Public Library had made available. I sent her an email to ask if I could modify her docs for use at our library and she sent me her PowerPoint slides (don't get me started on PowerPoint, death by PPT, try Prezi instead). I used this as a starting point making a few changes to customize for our library. You'll notice in addition to step by step instructions using numbers and bullets there is a screen shot included that allows the tutorial to explain a few things about choosing ebook formats.
- Visit the website or screen which you would like to demonstrate.
- Press ctrl+prtScn (print screen button located along top row of keyboard at end of F# keys) at the same time. This will take a screen shot, basically copying the viewing area of your screen, placing it unseen on the "clipboard" to be pasted later (it will be pasted as an image file). Mac users press Command-Control-Shift-3. The screen shot will be placed on your clipboard for you to paste into another program.
- Open Microsoft Paint (on most computers, Start Button>Programs>Accessories>Paint). Or for Mac use Grab ( bundled on Mac OS X Applications>Utilities folder). More Mac Screenshot Tips here.
- Pressing ctrl+v will paste the screen shot into your editor (MS Paint, MS Word works too).
- You may need to crop the image using the "select" tool (square box with dashed lines)
- Then choose File>save as> and you can choose to save as jpeg or a few other image files.
- These 7 steps could be modified and expanded to explain to a new blogger how to navigate the administrative dashboard of Blogger.
- Create a tutorial on one of the Digital Pipeline Resources and add it as a post to your course blog.
- Tutorials must include at least: images, text, relevant web links. Optional: embed video or audio.
- Please include a brief paragraph summarizing your experience creating the tutorial, tools used, etc.
- Post a link to your tutorial as a comment to this post.