Filming + Editing your ONLINE COURSE (on a budget)


Filming and editing your online course is possible, and the awesome part it is easier and cheaper than you think!


I've been filming and editing videos for the past 5 years now. I started with the organization I was under and have continued it with my personal business. This year our organization had to get everything online, so for the college I did some course recording and editing. In this post, I will take you through the steps I took to create those courses.


Creativity is possible no matter what budget you have.

Below you will see two videos that I posted on YouTube. Check them out and follow along to get a more detailed description and visual of how to do this properly.


Filming your Online Course


Filming your course can look great on a low budget, it all depends on setting it up in the best way possible even if you only have a 1 shot camera set-up or a 2 shot camera set-up.



Equipment needed for 1 camera shot

  • 1 tripod

  • Camera or phone

  • Audio

  • Plan A Audio: plug-in lapel mic

  • Plan B Audio: Phone recording

  • 1 SD card (if applicable)



Equipment needed for 2 camera shot

  • 2 tripods

  • 2 Camera or 2 phones

  • Plan A Audio: plug-in lapel mic

  • Plan B Audio: Phone recording or Rode Mic Go

  • 2 SD cards (if applicable)


When setting up your camera

  1. Setup tripod and camera at eye-level

  2. Be aware of headspace and framing when adjusting the camera's shot

  3. Move any distractions out of the background that would distract from the subject speaking

  4. Test out the audio before you begin

  5. Have a Plan B audio - look above at the "equipment" for options

  6. Clap at the beginning of recording, so you can align clips in post-editing

  7. Record in segments of 30 minutes because DSLR cameras only record for that length


Lighting - Natural or Studio Lights

For your lighting you can choose either natural light OR studio lights. Natural light is cheaper, free of charge of course. Then studio lights you are going to have to purchase your own or use what you have. The lights I was using was purchased through Amazon.



Natural Light


Make sure that the subject is by the window, so the natural light is illuminating the subject’s face. You'll want to turn the chair more towards the window, so there are not too many shadows on the subject.



Studio Lights


Have natural light coming from one side and the studio light on the other side to fill in the shadows. When setting up the light, make sure that it is elevated higher than your subject and it is at 45 degree angle.

Once you are all set-up, you are ready to start filming your course. Make sure that you follow the instructions in the video above to get more of a visual.



Editing your Online Course with Premiere Pro


Editing can be a tricky thing to figure out at first but once you get started, it gets easier. For this you can use any editing software. But in this tutorial I am using Adobe Premiere Pro as my editing software,


As I said before, I with an organization and I recorded and edited an online course for the college. You'll see in the video above on how I edited it, along with how to edit if you have a 1 shot camera or more than one camera. I suggest to follow along with my video tutorial as you edit your own course.



Before you start - Importing videos to your computer


Name your files when you are importing all your video files from the SD cards that you recorded your course with. This makes it easier to find the files and organize them when you are editing through the software.

Video Editing Tips

  1. Align all your video and audio clips with the clap (see the video at 4:22 for more details)

  2. Make sure to adjust all volumes, sizing/framing, and colours correctly before trimming and cutting any video or audio clips

  3. When adjusting the audio, make sure to keep the peak volume around -12 decibels (dB).



Editing with 1 Camera Shot


If you only have one camera shot. Take the video onto the timeline as the first video layer, copy the video into a second layer so you have 2 of the same video.

Have the first layer as the original video and then adjust the 2nd layer in sizing by zooming in more to the subject, making it more of a medium/closeup shot (see 12:16 in the video tutorial above).


EDITING TIP - If you choose to record and edit in this style, it does lower the resolution of your video because you are cropping the size of your original video. Make sure not to crop too much because the closer you crop the less resolution your video will have.



Just remember as you film and edit your course, creativity is possible no matter what budget you have. Do it, go for it, it is possible!


Let me know if you have any questions at alyssa@justcreating.ca or ask away in the comments below.

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