Sunday, May 10, 2015

Tech Tip: Advantages of a YouTube Playlist

One of my Canvas live content pages displays a "Growth Mindset" playlist from YouTube; you can see the page here: Growth Mindset Playground - YouTube. I created the playlist at YouTube, and then I embedded the playlist in Canvas.

As I add new videos to the playlist (and I'll be adding a lot of videos!), they appear automatically at Canvas; I don't need to do anything after embedding the YouTube playlist in the Canvas page:

Playing a Video in a Playlist. Just click play to watch the video, and when the first video in a playlist ends, the next video in the list begins. That is the greatest power of the playlist: you can set up a series of videos for your students to watch.

Playlist Index. When you go to my Canvas YouTube page, you will see the video that is first in the playlist, but you can also access the playlist index by clicking in the upper left-hand corner. The index shows the other videos in the list:

Playlist Video at YouTube. If you click on the "Watch on YouTube" link in the bottom of the video, you will see the video displayed at YouTube together with information about the playlist to the right. Click on this link for an example of how YouTube displays a video as part of a playlist: How to Build Your Creative Confidence.

Playlist Page at YouTube. Finally, if you click on the title of the playlist in the playlist navigation panel, you will go to the actual YouTube page for the playlist, like this: Growth Mindset Playlist. This is the page where the creator of the playlist (me, in this case!) can rearrange videos, add annotations, etc.

Advantages of Playlists. As you can see, a playlist of videos, as opposed to a series of separate videos, can offer a lot of advantages. In other TechTips: YouTube posts, I'll explain in detail how to create and maintain a YouTube playlist and also how to embed the playlist in Canvas. Meanwhile, here is a quick list of reasons why I like working with YouTube playlists:
  • the playlist is dynamic, so you can add, remove, and rearrange content, but the link to the playlist stays the same
  • the playlist can be embedded in lots of places, like Canvas, in a webpage, in the sidebar of a blog (like in this blog), etc.
  • you can provide your own video descriptions by adding notes to the playlist page
  • you can encourage students to explore the topic in depth by collecting related videos in a playlist
  • playlists are part of your YouTube channel, so students can explore your other playlists and saved videos
  • students can learn video curation skills by observing your use of playlists... and then everybody can make playlists to share!
Do you use YouTube playlists? Let me know your thoughts here in the comments or at Twitter; I'm @OnlineCrsLady. Also, if you have questions, let me know, and I'll be sure to answer them in the other TechTips: YouTube posts.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I've set this up for Google accounts only but with no word verification; you can also contact me by email ( or at Twitter (@OnlineCrsLady).