Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Instructional Development of Media-Based Science OER


Video and interactive media provide visual exposition and review for students to formulate cognitive representations where learning and reflection take place, especially in science laboratories. More inclusively, open educational resources (OER) with interactive content can facilitate access to media-enhanced learning. This paper reports part of a multi-year ongoing design-based research (DBR), focusing on the instructional development of media-based OER content in two geoscience laboratory education projects. The researchers have taken a case study approach to analyzing and exploring the design and development of accessible and interactive OER media, including photography and videography space, lighting conditions, camera settings, interactive media production, and OER publishing platforms. Findings have revealed the instructional development procedures, workflow and protocol of generating closed captioning for scientific video, data management techniques, and operability of media content in publishing platforms. The results are of practical and innovative values to the instructional development of science OER.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7
Fig. 8


  1. Allen, I. E., & Seaman, J. (2014). Opening the curriculum: Open Educational Resources in US higher education, 2014. Retrieved from

  2. Amiel, T., & Reeves, T. C. (2008). Design-based research and educational technology: Rethinking technology and the research agenda. Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 11(4), 29–40.

  3. Bower, M. (2008). Affordance analysis–matching learning tasks with learning technologies. Educational Media International, 45(1), 3–15.

  4. Buck, L. B., Bretz, S. L., & Towns, M. H. (2008). Characterizing the level of inquiry in the undergraduate laboratory. Journal of College Science Teaching, 38(1), 52–58.

  5. Carabajal, I. G., Marshall, A. M., & Atchison, C. L. (2017). A synthesis of instructional strategies in geoscience education literature that address barriers to inclusion for students with disabilities. Journal of Geoscience Education, 65(4), 531–541.

  6. Caswell, T., Henson, S., Jensen, M., & Wiley, D. (2008). Open content and open educational resources: Enabling universal education. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 9(1).

  7. Chiu, T. K., & Churchill, D. (2015). Exploring the characteristics of optimal design of digital materials for concept learning in mathematics: Multimedia learning and variation theory. Computers & Education, 82, 280–291.

  8. Choque-Velasquez, J., Kozyrev, D. A., Colasanti, R., Thiarawat, P., Intarakhao, P., Jahromi, B. R., & Hernesniemi, J. (2017). The open access video collection project “Hernesniemi's 1001 and more microsurgical videos of neurosurgery”: A legacy for educational purposes. Surgical Neurology International, 8, 188.

  9. Creswell, J. W. (2013). Qualitative inquiry: Choosing among five approaches. Los Angeles: Sage.

  10. Fuery, C., Whiting, J., Cribb, B., Williams, J., & Cairney, J. (2017). Online microscope simulators for training and outreach. Microscopy and Microanalysis, 23(S1), 2300–2301.

  11. Galloway, K. R., & Bretz, S. L. (2015a). Development of an assessment tool to measure students’ meaningful learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory. Journal of Chemical Education, 92(7), 1149–1158.

  12. Galloway, K. R., & Bretz, S. L. (2015b). Measuring meaningful learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory: A national, cross-sectional study. Journal of Chemical Education, 92(12), 2006–2018.

  13. Galloway, K. R., & Bretz, S. L. (2016). Video episodes and action cameras in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory: Eliciting student perceptions of meaningful learning. Chemistry Education Research and Practice, 17(1), 139–155.

  14. Gloman, C., & LeTourneau, T. (2012). Placing shadows: Lighting techniques for video production. Routledge.

  15. Grissom, A. N., Czajka, C. D., & McConnell, D. A. (2015). Revisions of physical geology laboratory courses to increase the level of inquiry: Implications for teaching and learning. Journal of Geoscience Education, 63(4), 285–296.

  16. He, Y., Swenson, S., & Lents, N. (2012). Online video tutorials increase learning of difficult concepts in an undergraduate analytical chemistry course. Journal of Chemical Education, 89(9), 1128–1132.

  17. Hofstein, A., & Lunetta, V. N. (1982). The role of the laboratory in science teaching: Neglected aspects of research. Review of Educational Research, 52(2), 201–217.

  18. Hung, H. T. (2011). Design-based research: Designing a multimedia environment to support language learning. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 48(2), 159–169.

  19. Kartiko, I., Kavakli, M., & Cheng, K. (2010). Learning science in a virtual reality application: The impacts of animated-virtual actors’ visual complexity. Computers & Education, 55(2), 881–891.

  20. Krygier, J. B., Reeves, C., DiBiase, D., & Cupp, J. (1997). Design, implementation, and evaluation of multimedia resources for geography and earth science education. Journal of Geography in Higher Education, 21(1), 17–39.

  21. Larson, M. B., & Lockee, B. B. (2014). Streamlined ID: A practical guide to instructional design. Routledge.

  22. Liu, M., Jones, C., & Hemstreet, S. (1998). Interactive multimedia design and production processes. Journal of Research on Computing in Education, 30(3), 254–280.

  23. Mayer, R. E. (2002). Multimedia learning. In Psychology of Learning and Motivation (Vol. 41, pp. 85-139). Cambridge, MA: Academic press.

  24. Mayer, R., & Mayer, R. E. (Eds.). (2014). The Cambridge handbook of multimedia learning. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

  25. Mayer, R. E., Bove, W., Bryman, A., Mars, R., & Tapangco, L. (1996). When less is more: Meaningful learning from visual and verbal summaries of science textbook lessons. Journal of Educational Psychology, 88(1), 64–73.

  26. Michel, R. G., Cavallari, J. M., Znamenskaia, E., Yang, K. X., Sun, T., & Bent, G. (1999). Digital video clips for improved pedagogy and illustration of scientific research—With illustrative video clips on atomic spectrometry. Spectrochimica Acta Part B: Atomic Spectroscopy, 54(13), 1903–1918.

  27. McKenney, S., & Reeves, T. C. (2019). Conducting educational design research. New York, NY: Routledge.

  28. Moss, E., & Cervato, C. (2016). Quantifying the level of inquiry in a reformed introductory geology lab course. Journal of Geoscience Education, 64(2), 125–137.

  29. National Science Digital Library (NSDL) OER Commons (2019). Retrieved from

  30. Rapp, A. K., Healy, M. G., Charlton, M. E., Keith, J. N., Rosenbaum, M. E., & Kapadia, M. R. (2016). YouTube is the most frequently used educational video source for surgical preparation. Journal of Surgical Education, 73(6), 1072–1076.

  31. Schmidt-McCormack, J. A., Muniz, M. N., Keuter, E. C., Shaw, S. K., & Cole, R. S. (2017). Design and implementation of instructional videos for upper-division undergraduate laboratory courses. Chemistry Education Research and Practice, 18(4), 749–762.

  32. van Rooij, S. W. (2011). Instructional design and project management: Complementary or divergent? Educational Technology Research and Development, 59(1), 139–158.

  33. Wiley, D. (2017). OER-enabled pedagogy [Blog post]. Iterating toward openness. Retrieved from

  34. Wiley, D., Green, C., & Soares, L. (2012). Dramatically bringing down the cost of education with OER: How open education resources unlock the door to free learning. Center for American Progress.

  35. Zimmerer, C., Thiele, S., Salzer, R., Krauseneck, A., & Körndle, H. (2003). Internet teaching: Laboratory course in analytical chemistry. Microchimica Acta, 142(3), 153–159.

Download references


This paper is based on the research in OER design and development projects funded by National Science Foundation (NSF #1611798) and Virginia’s Academic Library Consortium (VIVA 002VCRS19). The media production has been from the media art and design talent of Ceanna Adams, Mark Peale, and Katherine Whitbred. The projects have also received technology and instrumentation support from the Libraries and College of Science and Mathematics at James Madison University.

Author information

Correspondence to Juhong Christie Liu.

Ethics declarations

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were per the ethical standards as reviewed and approved by the Institutional Review Board and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Additional information

Publisher’s Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Liu, J.C., Johnson, E. Instructional Development of Media-Based Science OER. TechTrends (2020).

Download citation


  • Video and interactive media
  • Instructional development
  • Open educational resources (OER)
  • Geology
  • Geoscience laboratory
  • STEM and science learning