Prevent scrolling forward in interactive video's

I would like to prevent students to scroll forward in interactive video's. The goal is that the student sees the whole video and not some snapshots.

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otacke's picture

I think that would be pretty easy to build into h5p, but I, personally, would wait for two reasons.

  1. I just filed in a pull request for a feature that involves jumping to interactions directly, and it would have to be changed again. I'd rather wait until the pull request is accepted and merged with h5p or denied.
  2. More important, IMHO: I wonder if preventing to seek would really result in students watching the whole video. It rather reminds me of some lectures at university where I was forced to attend in order to get some kind of evidence of attendance. Did I listen? No. Why shouldn't students be allowed to skip parts of a video, e. g. if they can already complete the interactions? What do others think about this issue?

I think it would be very valuable as a configurable option. Although I agree with #2 in principle, in many contexts (e.g., various industrial training standards, continuing education requirements, etc.) the total instructional/training time remains very important. In such settings, implementing true competency-based instruction (i.e., allowing them to skip ahead if they can already answer questions correctly) could actually punish the learner because they may not meet the time requirement of the training. There are also settings where you can be reasonably sure the learner will not know your content at all, so allowing them to skip content would not be helpful.

otacke's picture

This might go a little off topic...

Hmm, well, nobody is forced to skip content and can watch the whole video if there are "training" times to be met ;-)

I totally agree that there will be settings where students will not know the content - but I doubt that they will learn it just by "forcefully" exposing them to a video. There's probably a reason why they want to skip something, and they will find another way of "skipping", e.g. checking texts or whatever.

Well, it depends on the purpose and nature of the video. A talking-head lecture is very different from a careful demonstration of a specific skill or a case study showing a particular behavior/incident/event that you want the learner to analyze. And one of the reasons a learner would want to skip ahead is to get out of learning the material at all (i.e., save time and get back to doing more interesting things). This type of "racing" through material is a real problem in elearning. And if your assessments aren't well-constructed (and you have "retry" turned on), a learner could guess their way through the questions and past all of the content. 

otacke's picture

Yes, a learner could sneak through a course and cheat himself or herself because he or she actually learned nothing at all. I tend to think of assessments in interactive videos as a tool for self-assessment, not for testing (well, and you probably didn't mean that badly designed assessments should be compensated by a "force" option). Repeating myself, I really don't believe that forcing someone to watch a video will result in a true learning outcome, but a teacher might sleep better at night thinking... Anyway, I am totally fine if someone disagrees. My two cents.

Again, though, it depends on the nature and purpose of the video. For example, the evidence-based best practices for teaching concepts is to present a clear definition, a prototype example, and a carefully selected range of examples and non-examples. For some concepts, those examples and non-examples may be best presented as videos. In such cases, we know from many decades of research that most learners WILL benefit from exposure to those examples and non-examples. Likewise, video examples or modeling can be absolutely key to teaching certain skills. Allowing learners to skip past such videos will absolutely be to their detriment. This is not just an opinion or something to help teachers "sleep better at night" -- it is based on lots and lots of sound educational research.

If you are using videos that will not support your learning outcomes at all, what is the point of creating or using those videos in the first place? Just get rid of them and save everyone a lot of time.

otacke's picture

As I said, learners are cheating  themselves if they skip. And that was exactly my point: using videos that will not support your learning outcomes at all are pointless, and making them compulsory doesn't make them better. We're getting our wires crossed, I guess. I'll grab some food now.

I guess I really don't understand what you're saying then in relation to the suggested feature. I'm saying that there ARE situations where making videos compulsory is helpful and important, thus a setting that prevents learners from skipping past them (without responding correctly to interactions) is also helpful.

otacke's picture

Maybe without going into too much detail: I just think that it's also part of learning to take responsibility for one's learning process, thus growing as a person.

I think I cannot squeeze the results of a study from Dan Ariely about procrastination in here. If you're interested, you should have a look at his book 'Predictably Irrational', or maybe you can find it somewhere on the internet. It covers the same problem: Making decisions for students leads to best grades, but not to educated people - that requires more freedom. So he chose a middle path for his teaching.

What do you think about this option: Teachers could set watching a video as compulsory if they think (or know) it is appropriate. But students could still decide to overrule this setting consciously after reading a "warning" from the teacher.

Well, you're welcome to follow whatever educational theory or fad you'd like, but I don't think its tenets should be baked into educational software intended for widespread use. 

As for what leads to "educated people," I would say there is unlikely to be much convincing research because it all depends on how you define "educated person." Ask 10 average people what an "educated person" is, and you're likely to get 10 different answers. Ask 10 academics what an "educated person" is, and you're likely to get 100 different answers. :) 

There are clear and legitimate use cases for preventing the learner from skipping ahead in an interactive video, regardless of your personal beliefs about learning and education. Thus, I will get busy with my plans to fund this particular feature (and not in a way that gives the learner the opportunity to "overrule" the setting). 

otacke's picture


I meant to add "...without learning or knowing anything at all" to the end of that last sentence. 

Thank you for your quick response.

I agree with you that Section 2 is a strong point. It is the contradiction between freedom for the student to see just what it is worth and also the capture of "official teaching time."

If it can be built as a choice then I would certainly be welcome.

fnoks's picture


This feature is not currently on the roadmap, but it could be implemented as an optional feature if someone was willing to fund it, or someone in the community implemented it as a pull request.