FAQs

What is Re/Play?

Re/Play provides automated audio-visual lecture recording across the University to support student learning.

Re/Play provides recordings of audio and projected lecture content, which removes the need for verbatim note taking and enables richer contact with lecturers during teaching hours. Whilst enrolled at UoB, students can easily review recorded lectures in their unit, via Blackboard. 

Why has the University invested in Re/Play?

The University has invested in Re/Play to:

Which lecture theatres have Re/Play technology installed?

Check the list of lecture theatres where Re/Play has been installed. There is also a fixed camera installed in SM2 (Mathematics), in Priory Road Lecture Theatre and in Chemistry LT1. Please see, 'Can I record my lecture with a video camera?' below, for further details.

Student FAQs

How do I access my lecture recordings?

Published lecture recordings will typically be available two working days after the lecture takes place. You can access recordings on any device, using the free Blackboard mobile app (Android and iOS versions) or device browser.

If you cannot see the link to a lecture, please speak to your lecturer about whether the recording is on a hidden or published setting. Once this has been clarified and there's still a fault, please contact: service-desk@bristol.ac.uk
Not all lectures are scheduled to be recorded, please speak to your lecturer or school administration office for further details.

Can I download or save the lecture recordings?

It is not possible to download our Re/Play lecture recordings. The UoB policy for recording educational activities(PDF) protects staff copyright by blocking downloads of recorded lectures. More details of the policy can be found on our Policy webpage.

I would like to speed up /slow down playback of recordings

Unfortunately, speed options are not currently available for our lecture recordings (although you may see a speed-up option on short presentations made with the Desktop Recorder). We have requested this feature to be added for future lecture recordings.

Can my lecturer see whether I viewed a recorded lecture (students)?

Yes. Lecturers have access to these details when analysing viewing statistics. This facility is used to check which parts of a lecture have been viewed the most, which often points to a concept that has not been understood well by the students and requires further explanation.

Staff FAQs:

Will recording be mandatory?

It is possible to obtain an opt out of recordings. Please refer to Section 9 of the policy, approved by Senate, for further details. See the Policy page for further information about consultation and approval of this policy.

How do I request that my unit is recorded?

Only units taking place in equipped rooms will be recorded. Requests to be scheduled in an equipped room are handled through the Web Data Collection process, which takes place in March/April. You will be able to request lecture recording (audio and projected content only) via the Web Data Collection process at this time. The timetabling team will aim to accommodate as many requests as possible but cannot guarantee that units will be scheduled into equipped rooms. If you have opted your unit out of being recorded in the current academic year and now want to opt it back in, use this Opt In form to let us know. You can find more details, in the How To section of this website. Please note your request will be actioned within two working days of being submitted but Re/Play recording schedules will take 48 hours after this to update.

How do I know the recording has started?

The lecture recording process is automated. Recording will automatically start at the scheduled lecture start time and stop at five minutes before the scheduled end. For example, the recording of a one-hour lecture scheduled for 2pm will start at 2pm and end at 2.55pm. You will know recording has started when the red light is continuously on. You can pause, restart and stop recording using the button under the light. If you ever want to check whether a recording is under way, you can use the Ad Hoc App to check the Recorder Status (log on to the room PC and click on the ‘Adhoc recorder’ desktop shortcut). If you have a Re/Play technology issue, please contact IT services on 0117 42 82222 (internal: 82222)  or email: service-desk@bristol.ac.uk.

Why is my lecture not being recorded?

Only sessions classed as lectures (not seminars etc) in Syllabus Plus and part of a SITS units (units with a code that has 4 letters and 5 digits) taking place in an equipped room are scheduled for recording. If your session fits these criteria and the red light does not come on, please follow these steps:
• During the lecture, open the Ad Hoc app (illustrated instructions are available in the room's folder). This will tell you if the recording has already started (in which case, please report a fault with the light to: service-desk@bristol.ac.uk), or give you the opportunity to manually start it.
• After the lecture, if the recording had not started automatically, contact your School Office to check whether your Syllabus Plus data is accurate. The recording schedule is driven by a data feed from Syllabus Plus. If your lecture or unit code does not appear in Syllabus Plus, or if your session is not categorised as a 'lecture' it will NOT be recorded.

Why was my lecture not recorded?

If you cannot find your recording, please use the following questions and answers to find out why this may be:

  1. Are you the owner of the recording (i.e. are you either the only staff listed for this lecture in Syllabus Plus or the Unit Director)? If you are not, you will not receive a notification that the recording is ready, but as long as you are enrolled on the Blackboard course as an Instructor you can still view and edit the recording via My Re/Play (top right when logged in on Blackboard). If you have access to a lot of recordings, you can narrow them down by unit by clicking on the Shared Folders (bottom left in My Re/Play). See the Re/Play Help section on Blackboard for full, illustrated instructions for accessing recordings.
  2. Was your lecture scheduled in an equipped room? Check the list of lecture theatres where Re/Play has been installed.
  3. Was your Syllabus Plus data accurate? The recording schedule is driven by a data feed from Syllabus Plus. If your lecture or unit code does not appear in Syllabus Plus, it will NOT be recorded. Your timetabled information must also be correctly classified, as Only SESSIONS IDENTIFIED AS A 'LECTURE' will be recorded. Anything listed as a different activity type will NOT be recorded, i.e. seminars or exercise lectures. Please contact your School student administration team if you need to clarify or amend your teaching classifications.
  4. Did you connect using a HDMI cable? Unfortunately, this will not capture screen input - only audio. Please make sure you connect your device to the VGA cable to allow the capture of your screen.
  5. Is your session part of a SITS unit? Currently, we are only able to support the recording of lectures within UoB SITS units (units with a code that has 4 letters and 5 digits) at this time. Please see 'I am delivering/organising a special event/lecture, how do I arrange to have it recorded?' for further information. If you have a Re/Play technology issue, please contact the Learning Facilities Management please contact IT Services on (0117) 42 82222 or email: service-desk@bristol.ac.uk

What do I do if the lapel microphone is not working?

Please ensure the microphone is switched to the ON position. The microphone must be secured close enough to your mouth for your voice to be recorded clearly. Make sure the microphone is not set to 'Mute'. If the battery is depleted, use the spare battery available in the charger. If the spare battery is also depleted, porters normally have disposable batteries you can use. Illustrated instructions are available on Re/Play Help on Blackboard. If the lapel microphone cannot be used for any reason, please remain near the boundary microphone, as this will still capture your voice, though not as clearly. Make sure you correctly replace the microphone in the charger after your lecture so it can be used for the next session.

What if I decide I do not want my lecture/part of a unit recorded?

You can only opt out of an entire unit being recorded, not just part of it. If you would like specific lectures in a Unit NOT to be recorded you have two options:

  1. You can manually override the recording on the day by pressing and holding the red button until the light goes off.
  2. You can allow the recording to take place as scheduled but make an individual lecture 'Private' (this has to be done after it has automatically been made 'Viewable', two working days after the lecture).
  3. Or, delete it after recording has taken place (which can be done via Blackboard at any time). Illustrated instructions for deleting or hiding your recordings are available in Re/Play Help on Blackboard.

What is the Ad Hoc app?

The Ad Hoc app allows you to manually start a recording if you are in a Re/Play equipped lecture theatre. The app can be used to capture lectures if they are not scheduled to record automatically, or if a scheduled recording doesn't start. You can also use the Ad Hoc App to restart recordings, which have been accidentally or purposefully stopped with the red button. To use this function, you will need to log on to the lecture theatre PC. For instructions, please refer to the visual step-by-step guide on how to use the Ad Hoc app. A one-page guide is also available and printed instructions are available in equipped lecture theatre room folders.

Box recorders, Ad Hoc app, Desktop Recorder - what is the difference?

We are expanding the Re/Play service in 2017/2018. Currently, 69 rooms are equipped with the standard box recorders - these are the machines that record scheduled taught unit lectures automatically. The PCs in the rooms that have box recorders also have an application called the Ad Hoc App installed. This allows lecturers to start the recording manually, if necessary (e.g. in the event of scheduling error or accidentally stopping the recording by pressing the red button).

In addition to these box and Ad Hoc recorders, you can request access to the Desktop Recorder, an application that allows you to make short recordings from your own devices. This can be used to record materials to show students ahead of lectures, so the face-to-face sessions can be more interactive (often referred to as "flipping the classroom" - you can see a case study of this on Digital Education Office's website) or, to explain topics that students have difficulties with in more detail.
Re/Play is free to use for educational purposes and chargeable for other purposes - more details are available in the How-To section of this website. You can request the Desktop Recorder via our online form. Full instructions for using the Desktop Recorder are available in the Re/Play Help section on Blackboard.

I am worried about copyright and the recording of Lectures - what do I need to know?

Re/Play does not change the University’s current policy on copyright in relation to both teaching and research material. However, feedback has raised several important questions about the level of awareness of the current policy. Checking the copyright status of third party material in your lecture slides is and always has been the individual’s responsibility. Ensuring that other people’s rights are respected is viewed as good academic practice and is what we would expect of others in relation to our own work.

If staff have any concerns about materials within their presentation, they can use the red button in the lecture theatre to pause and restart the recording as necessary. Library Services, in conjunction with Digital Education Office, have worked out some practical advice concerning copyright when using Re/Play. The presentation slides and the presentation video are available from the library web page. Some information is also available on the Policy and consent web page. Further queries relating to copyright should be directed to your Subject Librarian. The Intellectual Property Rights Office provides useful information on the current legislation.

Do I need to obtain consent for recording visitors/external speakers?

Yes. You must always obtain signed consent from guest lecturers or speakers before you record their lecture. This applies to non-honorary staff or those lecturers who have not signed the new Terms and Conditions for Honorary Staff. The consent form is available via the Policy page of this website. It should be renewed annually if required.

How do I make recordings for non-educational purposes?

There are cost implications for all hosted content. Staff who wish to use Re/Play to record non-educational materials, e.g. for project messages and updates, are able to buy hours of Desktop Recorder content by using the request form. For more details, see How to request the Desktop Recorder. To request a non-educational lecture theatre recording, please email digital-education@bristol.ac.uk.

I use chalkboards. How does Re/Play affect me?

You are not expected to change your teaching style to use Re/Play. We hope staff will take advantage of the opportunities Re/Play provides for students to review material from classes. However, we also know that for some, adapting to a recordable format presents more of a challenge and we do not expect anyone to stop using chalkboards if that is their preferred medium. Staff are welcome to try out and trial different options, according to their preferences.

A few ideas

  1. Video, Slide and Audio template recording. Two rooms have a fixed camera installed which can capture the chalkboard/whiteboard: Chemistry LT1, SM2 in the Maths Building.
  2. Slide and Audio template recording of lectures (captures projected content including visualiser, camera not used). This records 4 frames per second, and photos of the chalkboards can be added to the presentation ahead of publishing to students. This is the default option, so no request needs to be made unless you have changed to a different template and want to revert to this.
  3. Screencast and Audio template recording of lectures (captures projected content including visualiser, camera not used). This records 30 frames per second and may be helpful if you need to capture video on the recording. However, you do not have the same editing options with this template e.g. you cannot add photos of the chalkboards to the presentation.
  4. Audio-only recording of lectures.
  5. No recording of lecture, following the opt-out process.

In addition to any of the options above, you can pre-record material using the Desktop Recorder which students can view either before or after the lecture. Template changes and opt-outs can be requested via our Forms bank.

Room/Time have changed; will my lecture still be recorded?

FAQS about accessing/editing recordings

How do I access my recording?

Recordings are accessed via the My Re/Play tab in Blackboard (top right corner). Full instructions are available in the Re/Play Help section on Blackboard. If you are the person named against that lecture in Syllabus Plus, you will be the recording's owner, which means you will receive a notification when the recording is ready. If there is no-one or multiple staff named in Syllabus Plus, the Unit Director will own the recording and receive the notification. Recordings made since Monday 15 February 2016 are accessible and editable by anyone enrolled as an Instructor on the corresponding Blackboard course. To locate the lecture, you delivered and action edits or make it viewable please go to My Re/Play in Blackboard (tab in the top right corner) and open the shared folder for the unit (bottom of left navigation bar). Full instructions are available in Re/Play Help section on Blackboard. Recordings made prior to 15 February 2016 are not available in shared folders, and if you need editing access to them you will need to contact their owner for editing permissions (instructions for doing this are available in the Re/Play Help section on Blackboard).

Why am I getting notifications about recordings I did not deliver?

This is caused by incomplete or incorrect data in either Syllabus Plus or SITS.

Why am I not receiving notifications about recordings I have delivered?

When a recording is ready, which normally happens just a few minutes after the lecture is over, anyone who is enrolled as an Instructor on the unit can access it via My Re/Play, regardless of whether they received a notification or not. Full instructions for accessing recordings are available in the Re/Play Help section on Blackboard.

Can I give editing rights to a colleague?

If a colleague can be enrolled as an instructor on the Blackboard course, there is no need to give editing permissions.

How do I delete recordings?

For instructions please see Delete a recording on our How to Page, or visit the Re/Play Help section on Blackboard. You can only delete one recording at a time. If you would like to delete a whole series, please contact: service-desk@bristol.ac.uk so that we can help speed up the process.

Recordings that have never been published and are not intended to be made public in the future (whether they are lectures of other materials e.g. recorded with the Desktop Recorder) can and should be deleted so that we can stay within our storage quota. On the other hand, recordings that have been made available to students should normally stay available to students for the duration of their programme of study - see section 15 of the UoB policy for recording educational activities.

FAQS about playing recordings

I can't play my recording

If you are a member of staff and can see your recording in My Re/Play but are unable to play it, (plus the following message is visible; "The requested presentation is currently unavailable"), this is because the content is still set to private. You can either preview it via the Edit Video menu or make it viewable in My Re/Play. Full instructions are available in the Re/Play Help section on Blackboard.
If you are a student and are having trouble playing a recording please contact: service-desk@bristol.ac.uk

I'm having trouble viewing recordings in Safari

In Safari 7.0 or 6.1, you may need to disable the Safari Power Saver feature, which is intended to disable plug-ins in order to conserve battery power.
Hover over the video window of a presentation until an icon appears, click to allow the plug-in on the webpage. If this icon does not appear properly, you must disable Power Saver completely in order to allow the plug-in to run. To disable the Power Saver function, enter Safari Preferences, go to the Advanced tab, and uncheck the box to "Stop plug-ins to save power". Reload the webpage containing the Re/Play presentation and it should play properly.

Why is my lecture recording audio only?

There are several potential reasons for this:

  1. The screen resolution of the lecture room monitor was incorrectly set. The recording equipment will only pick up visuals if the resolution is set to the values indicted on the sticker on the monitor.
  2. If you are using an Apple Mac laptop to present then you will need to connect to the VGA adapter, as they will not transmit to the main screen via HDMI. Unfortunately when connected to VGA, the output will not be recorded by Re/Play. This is because Mac’s encrypt their desktop with HDCP, whilst other devices will encrypt when playing content that requires it, (such as when playing a Hollywood movie). HDCP is designed to prevent copying of materials and is at odds with a lecture capture system which is trying to do just that. This means that any lecture capture system will not record video from a Mac via HDMI. 
  3. The Unit Director has requested an audio-only template. This is usually requested when the only visual content is provided on chalkboard.
  4. A DVD was played, which could not be re-recorded in compliance with copyright protection.

Why is there no sound on my recording?

This can happen if the lecturer(s) did not use the lapel microphone in a lecture theatre. Our Rooms list, indicates which lecture theatres have lapel mics; in these rooms it is recommended to use the lapel mic, or if this is not possible, to stay in front of the boundary mic (illustrated instructions are available in Re/Play Help).
However, if you correctly used a lapel mic and the sound was not recorded please email service-desk@bristol.ac.uk.

I use videos/live annotation in my lectures which are not recorded properly, can this be fixed?

I can't see mouse/laser pointer movements on my recordings, can this be fixed?

Why can't I see or edit my recorded lecture in My Re/Play in Blackboard?

If you are unable to see your lectures in My Re/Play, this may be because you are enrolled as an Instructor on the corresponding Blackboard course. Please speak to your Unit Director or School Office to make sure you have been added correctly.

Why can I see recorded lectures that are not mine in My Re/Play in Blackboard?

For lectures that do not have a named person or defined ownership of recordings, notifications go to the corresponding Unit Director (as named in SITS). In order to allow those who delivered the lectures to view, edit and make their recordings 'viewable' in Blackboard. We have updated Re/Play to grant access to all academics on a shared unit without having to ask their Unit Directors for access. Please note this will not apply to recordings prior to 15 February 2016.

Please DO NOT edit the unit code and make sure you keep the year suffix (e.g. ABCD12345_2015) at the beginning of the title. This will facilitate future searches for students and lecturers alike, as well as running essential performance reports.

Who do I contact for more information?

Please email service-desk@bristol.ac.uk.

Apple Mac information

If you are using an Apple Mac laptop to present then you will need to connect to the VGA adapter, as they will not transmit to the main screen via HDMI. Unfortunately when connected to VGA, the output will not be recorded by Re/Play. This is because Mac’s encrypt their desktop with HDCP, whilst other devices will encrypt when playing content that requires it, (such as when playing a Hollywood movie). HDCP is designed to prevent copying of materials and is at odds with a lecture capture system which is trying to do just that. This means that any lecture capture system will not record video from a Mac via HDMI.