Experiences from Video Lectures in Software Engineering Education

Figure: Screenshot from a Video Lecture on Gamification Figure: Screenshot from a Video Lecture on Gamification

In this research paper we publish our results from a longitudal study where we observed ten courses that used video instruction as a part of a course. Overall the experiences with video-based learning were positive. The video lectures were perceived to be highly useful by the students and were rated to be the most useful component of the course in a majority of the observed courses. Also, some of the tutorial videos received a lot of traffic from external sources, indicating that the videos provided additional benefit to the wider public.

The problems identified from prior research, especially the added effort and costs of video production, were not not an issue. We also found that unlike in previous literature, the video length did not affect usage patterns or student satisfaction. Previously shorter videos have been recommended, but longer and well-structured videos worked just as well.

One notable statistic is that the majority of viewers used a desktop or a laptop machine (84%), while only a fraction (14%) used mobile devices such as smartphones or tables.

See also our previous work on flipped classroom teaching method, which depends heavily on video lectures (presentation slides on flipped classroom).

Read More

Preprint is available at ResearchGate.


Millennials have learned to seek information from the Internet whenever they need to know something and want to learn things. In this study, we present observations from several university courses with freely available online resources for the modern students. Ten different courses with video lectures were observed, often with positive outcomes and improved results compared to the previous course arrangements. Additionally, unlike in some previous literature, we observed that some issues such as the video length did not have a meaningful impact on the learning outcomes. Overall, the results indicate that videos offer excellent benefit-effort-ratio, and are an efficient way to reach the target audience: the students.


Antti Herala, Antti Knutas, Erno Vanhala, Jussi Kasurinen,”Experiences from Video Lectures in Software Engineering Education”, International Journal of Modern Education and Computer Science(IJMECS), Vol.9, No.5, pp.17-26, 2017. DOI: 10.5815/ijmecs.2017.05.03