Delivering Lectures at a Distance

Teaching During Extraordinary Times


There are a number of ways to deliver materials typically captured in a lecture when students are learning at a distance. While each of these options do not capture the nuance or depth of a face-to-face lecture, a focused presentation of lecture material can still be achieved.

Consider this...

Lecture is a means to both deliver information to students and to engage them in the material. Some alternatives to traditional, verbal lecture include:

  • Assigning textbook reading
  • Distributing a written lecture

One approach to determining a solution is to consider the components of your lecture.

($) denotes a cost may be involved in using this technology

Ways to deliver Lecture Materials


Typed, e-mailed Lecture

Delivering a lecture might be as easy as typing a lecture into a word processor and sending to students via e-mail. While low-tech, this is likely the easiest option for delivering a lecture to students at a distance.


Typed, uploaded lecture

Lectures can also be sent to students via an upload to the Content section of a Learn@UW course or to a MyWebSpace folder.




Uploaded Audio Recording

Lectures can be recorded as audio and uploaded to Learn@UW or MyWebSpace.

Audacity (download)
This free, open source, cross-platform audio recording and editing software is easy to use and is versatile enough for most situations.  Be sure to also download the LAME mp3 encoder that is listed as an optional download on this site so you can save your audio files in .mp3 format.


Podcast Audio Recording in iTunesU

Podcasting offers a means to automatically distribute new content to students.




PowerPoint presentation slides with notes

Existing or new PowerPoint presentations can be created and uploaded to LUW using the instructions below. The notes field can be used to give students additional context or narrative to each slide. Also make sure students have PowerPoint, or download the "PowerPoint" viewer for PC or Mac (right-click to copy the link for each).


Narrated PowerPoint Presentation

For an experience close to a typical lecture, it is possible to record your voice while walking through a PowerPoint presentation. Narration can be done directly in PowerPoint, using screen capture software, or by using software dedicated to narrating PowerPoint.




Blackboard Collaborate

Please see this page for information about Blackboard Collaborate.


WisLine Web and Phone Conference ($)

WiscLine Web is a real-time phone and PowerPoint conferencing solution. Please see this page for more information about WiscLine Web.




Existing Video Resources

Videos that you already have, whether in digital or other format, can be distributed to students via the web.



Many laptops come with a webcam and built-in software to record a lecture which can be uploaded to Learn@UW or even YouTube.


Video and PowerPoint presentations ($)

Products exist which allow instructors to explain complex concepts in a way that includes both PowerPoint and video demonstrations.