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Ex Libris Knowledge Center

Creating Video Support Materials for Summon

What is it?

This toolkit will help you create your own video support materials such as guides or tutorials, using your own Summon instance, to help your users get the most out of Summon.

When should you use this toolkit?

If your users are asking for video guides or tutorials, or if your Librarians want to provide this sort of material on your website.

Check our existing materials

If you don’t mind using generic materials, that don’t feature your branding, contact details and chosen feature set, then you can check out and link to our Summon LibGuide which includes videos on Basic Search and Advanced Search as well as tips on searching.

What should the videos cover?

If you prefer to make your own videos then if possible, we suggest asking your users what guides or tutorials they would find most useful. However, the following topics are a good place to start:

  • Basic Search – how to enter search terms, how to find a result online by following the Full Text Online link, how to find an item in the Library by finding the shelfmark, how to save a search, result or citation.
  • Narrowing your Search – how to use the facets to reduce the number of results and find more specific results, how to identify useful results using peer reviewed and other article identifiers
  • Expanding your Search – how to use features such as the Topic Explorer, Citation Trail, Related Articles or Altmetrics to find other useful resources related to your search
  • Advanced Search – how to use the Advanced Search form to pre-select facets, to search multiple fields or to search specific fields

Don’t try to cover too much in one video – keep them short and snappy to keep your user’s attention. Up to 5 minutes is ideal.

How can I create a video?

First, check with your IT department to see if they provide any useful software such as Camtasia. If you have a Learning Technology department, reach out to them for advice and support too.

If you don’t have any video creation software then you can still use free online tools to create useful videos:

  • Both Zoom and Microsoft Teams will allow you to share your screen and record a demonstration in Summon. If you don’t want to appear in the recording, make sure you turn your camera off but leave your microphone on!
  • Windows 10 includes an app called Video Editor that allows you to link multiple video clips into one recording. This means you can record short sections of video, then link them together, which is less intimidating then recording a whole video at once.
  • Search online for free screencast software and you will find several sites that allow you to record your screen, some will also allow you to record narration.

Tips for recording your videos

  • Prepare your search in advance – perhaps using a recent assignment or essay as an example
  • If you’re narrating the video, speak slowly and pause often. Consider writing a script or set of bullet points to follow
  • Demonstrate the search slowly and pause as you move from feature to feature so that the user can follow your cursor
  • If you have Video Editor, or other editing software, consider editing out pauses at the beginning and end of the recording.
  • Give your recordings clear filenames so that they’re easy to keep track of and / or link together

Promoting your videos

Once you’ve made your recordings, as well as putting them on your website, you can link to them from Summon using the Custom Panel or promote them on social media!


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