MiVideo supports collaborative research at U-M

Have you ever wondered how to efficiently manage and and share a collection of more than 15,000 research videos? “With MiVideo, of course!” says Melinda Kraft, ITS Teaching and Learning service manager.

MiVideo is the university’s streaming media service, powered by Kaltura, and is approved for use with certain types of sensitive data. “It’s a great option for studies that use video heavily because it enables research teams to work more efficiently and securely,” says Kraft.

That’s what a group of researchers from the School of Public Health, Medical School, and the Center for Human Growth and Development discovered. The researchers are studying the relationship of early childhood eating behaviors to factors such as weight gain, growth, and obesity risk. Before MiVideo, study videos were stored on a file server. “[With the old server]…granting access to collaborators and staff was cumbersome and the organizational system was not as sophisticated as in MiVideo,” says Julie Lumeng, one of the researchers.

What used to be a laborious process for student research assistants is now done in just a few clicks. After logging in to their project’s Mediaspace site with their U-M Weblogin credentials, they can quickly find and view the videos, watching for observational protocols and recording the data in an external system.

Using automated bulk upload tools, Alice Guo, a coding coordinator for one of these studies, has uploaded those 15,000 videos using CSV files that contain media file information. Kaltura automates the process, matching the metadata in her CSV to the video files, freeing Guo up to do other tasks.

Other MiVideo features that teams value are:

  • Free unlimited file storage and streaming
  • Automatic conversion of any format video file to mp4 format for easy playback
  • MCommunity integration and restricted channels that make setting up access fast and easy

According to Sean DeMonner, executive director of teaching and learning, “Adding unlimited storage to our contract is what enabled us to offer MiVideo to the entire U-M community free of charge.” In addition to being an invaluable resource for research projects, MiVideo is also integrated into Canvas at UM-Ann Arbor and UM-Dearborn, and Blackboard at UM-Flint. MiVideo also offers closed captioning, lecture capture, and personal screen recording tools. To learn more about MiVideo, visit the website and request a consultation.

(Amanda Brown, ITS Teaching & Learning Intern, contributed to this article.)