FAQs

Reserve Equipment or Rooms:
Student - Faculty/Staff - Schedule

Which services does the Multimedia Center offer?

The Multimedia Center offers the following services:

  • borrow equipment
  • advice on recording (visual, audio, etc.)
  • download footage from the recording device
  • cut video
  • compress video
  • upload to TaskStream (edTPA respectively)
  • creating PDFs
  • updating operating systems
  • installing software
  • Zoom
  • Dropbox
  • Office Suite (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook)
  • Google apps, e.g. email, drive, forms, spreadsheet, docs, ...
 

workshop

Available Workshops cd_1 Information about Software in the computer rooms. Computer Information about Hardware in the computer rooms.
Description of Recording Equipment

What are the policies of the Multimedia Center?

The page about the Multimedia Center Policies will explain all about the use of equipment and the rooms.

How can I borrow a laptop from CCNY for the semester?

The City College of New York has a laptop loaner program where you can borrow a laptop for the semester.

Equipment & Software

How do I reserve equipment?

If you are a student of the School of Education, with a valid CCNY student ID, you can borrow iPads, iPods, digital cameras and camcorders as well as tripods and microphones for up to two week to document your teaching and learning on and off campus. Priority will be given to students in research courses that require taped interviews and students who need devices to record their student teaching. You can reserve the equipment online.

How far in advance do I have to reserve equipment?

You have to reserve equipment at least one week in advance before you would like to use it but you should reserve equipment as soon as you know when you need it.

For how long can I reserve equipment?

Two weeks.

How can I extend my reservation?

Usually you cannot reserve equipment for more than two weeks but if there are circumstances where you have to (e.g. the session where you supposed to videorecord your teaching has been rescheduled), you have to summit another request via the Online Form. Put in the notes the special circumstances why you have to extend your reservation.

Which equipment should I reserve?

There is no easy answer to this question. It depends on your circumstances and your familiarity with equipment. As a rule of thumb, you should work with equipment you are familiar with. If you are not familiar with any equipment or you need to use equipment you never used before, make sure that you get to know the device before you use it to record yourself. The Multimedia Center staff can show you how to use our equipment and can answer your questions. We always recommend that you try your equipment in the setting you will record to see if you have any issues with the placement, picture or sound. Should you encounter difficulties with the quality of your recording, please talk to the Multimedia Center staff or Doris Grasserbauer. You can review the available equipment.

How can I zoom in & out on iPads?

Follow the instructions below to use the zoom on our iPads (iPad 2 and iPad4):
1. Goto settings, then click on Accessibilty and turn on the Zoom option.
2. Back in the camera app, put three fingers on the screen, double tap the screen, hold and swipe up for zooming in. Swipe down for zooming out. 

How to edit footage on campus and at home?

In the Multimedia Center we mainly use Adobe Premiere and iMovie to cut or edit videos.

Tutorials for editing videos:

YouTube videos for Adobe Premiere:

Note: iPad Video Editing Problems in Premiere
Editing videos on an iPad in Adobe Premiere is causing the video and audio to go out of sync during the editing process. Videos work fine in iMovie on an iPad. The described problem is caused by the way iPads record videos with a varying frame rate that cannot be changed on the device. Premiere does not convert the video into a constant frame rate.
In order to avoid this, before importing the video to Premiere, the video needs to be converted to a constant frame rate using Handbrake software.

At home you could use the following apps: (PC and MAC compatible) 


To compress videos you can also use HandBrake
HandBrake Tutorial

How can I make my video file smaller (video compression)?

Here is information on how you can compress videos if they are too big:
PC: http://www.edtpa.com/Content/Docs/VideoCompressionGuidePC.pdf
MAC: http://www.edtpa.com/Content/Docs/VideoCompressionGuideMac.pdf

The used application is called Any Video Converter. It is free to download from the links given on the handouts for both PC and iMac. We have it installed on some PCs and MACs in our lab.

You can also use HandBrake
HandBrake Tutorial

What assistive technology is available at the MMC for students with disabilities?

We have the following programs installed on some PCs in 4/221:

ZoomText 10
Allows you to enlarge the content of the screen significantly.

Dragon Naturally Speaking 9
Can read the content of the screen to you and you can dictate content to the computer.

How long can the MMC camcorders record?

  • Samsung camcorders record continuous but in 20 minutes files.
  • Casio Flip camcorders record 2 hours in one file.
  • Canon Vixia recording time with different resolutions on a 32GB SD card:

    35 Mbps : 1 hr and 58 mins
    24 Mbps : 2 hrs and 54 mins
    17 Mbps : 4 hrs and 5 mins
    4 Mbps : 16 hrs and 59 mins

    When changing the video quality, the camcorder tells you in the lower right corner how much time you have left of recording.

    This camcorder records for more 3 hours and 30 mins in an experiment. The footage was continuous with no splitting. The video was at 17Mbps Standard (Full HD) quality at the time of recording.

How can I convert a PDF file to MS Word?

There are different converters:

  1. https://www.pdfonline.com/pdf-to-word-converter/The converter works properly for simple text. For a document with mathematical equations, graphs and pi, it does not convert the pi text properly. It keeps the graphs as pictures. If a PDF is a plain text document the converter works well. There may be some formatting issues that arise during the conversion but that normally happens even when saving a doc as a pdf sometimes.
     
  2. For computers with Adobe Cloud subscription, Acrobat Reader can convert a PDF to a MS Word document; see link for more info https://helpx.adobe.com/reader/11/using/create-pdfs-convert-word-or.html

How to create an accessible PDF file?

Below are three different ways you can create an accessible PDF.

1. If you start out with a MS Word file:

  • Locate the MS Word file on your computer and open it.
  • Convert the document to the latest version of MS Word so you are able to see the warnings. Click the File tab. Convert your document to the latest version by clicking the “Info” tab, then click “Convert.” Once the converting has finished, you can check for accessibility  
  • To check accessibility in MS Word, click the “File” tab in the ribbon to open the Backstage View. In the “Info” section, click the “Check for Issues” drop-down button in the “Inspect Document” area. Then click the “Check Accessibility” command to launch the task pane. A list of “Errors” and/or “Warnings” may appear.
  • Fix all the issues and errors that were found.
  • If there are tables in the document:
    • You should add a title and alt text to them by selecting the table and right-clicking then choosing  "Table Properties"
    • You should click on the "Row" tab in table properties and uncheck “Allow rows to break across pages.”
    • In the same "Row" tab check “Repeat as header row at the top of each page.” 
    • Select OK and check the reading order in Natural Reader
  • Save the document and proceed to Natural Reader to make sure the document is fully readable. https://www.naturalreaders.com/online/
  • Fix all the issues and errors that were found, then go to the File tab on the top left of the screen and click on Save As and NOT Save.
  • From the options, choose PDF(*.pdf) from the drop-down menu underneath next to Save as type.
  • Save the newly created accessible PDF file to your desired location on the computer.
     
  • CCNY instructions to create an accessible PDFs

2. If you start out with a PDF file:

  • Download and save the PDF file to your desired location on the computer.
  • Using one of the following websites, convert the PDF file to an editable Word Document
    http://pdf2doc.com/
    https://www.pdfonline.com/pdf-to-word-converter/
  • Once the PDF file finishes converting to a MS Word document, click on the Download tab at the bottom of the screen.
  • Download and save the MS Word document file to your desired location on the computer.
  • Open the MS Word document and you may see a yellow box at the top of the document saying PROTECTED VIEW with a button saying, “Enable Editing”. Click on “Enable Editing” to start editing the document. If you don’t see the yellow box, disregard the previous sentence and start editing the document.
  • Follow the steps above to create the accessible PDF.

3. Alternative Method, if you have Adobe Acrobat Pro follow the step by step tutorial. In that tutorial you will learn how to make a file accessible as well as how to check for errors.

How to check that a PDF file is accessible?

  • Click on the Natural Reader link below and upload your newly created PDF file by clicking on the blue + sign on the top left part of the screen.https://www.naturalreaders.com/online/
  • Once the PDF file has uploaded, click on the check mark symbol beside the 100%.
  • Once the PDF file is shown on the screen, click on the play button beside the blue + sign. The website will now start reading the PDF file. If the website does not generate any sound, then the PDF file is not accessible. Read the next FAQ on how to create an accessible PDF file.
  • The voice of the playback and speed can be chosen according to your preferences.

How to use the audio recording software Audacity?

Audacity is a free, cross-platform software to record audio available at https://www.audacityteam.org/

The tutorial shows you how to open, cut, and move audio clips.

Does the School of Education have a site license for Notebook (SmartBoard)?

We currently do not have a site license for Notebook. Notebook is installed on all computers connected to Interactive Displays (SmartBoards) in different classrooms in the North Academic Center. Students can experiment and use the Notebook software in the Multimedia Center Room 4/221 or the Learning and Technology Resource Center Room 3/226.

edTPA - Teacher Performance Assessment

Since 2014 all student teachers have to complete an ePortfolio called edTPA (Teacher Performance Assessment). The Multimedia Center supports the student teachers in Task 2, creating a video of their teaching.

We offer the following services related to the edTPA video:

- lend out equipment
- advice on recording issues (visual, audio, etc.)
- download the footage from the recording device
- cut the video
- compress the video
- upload to TaskStream (edTPA respectively)

edTPA Re-Take

The procedure for submitting Re-takes for the edTPA portfolios in TaskStream is slightly different from the process of submitting the full edTPA portfolio. Please contact Dr. Leonard Lewis NAC 3/226 before beginning the process. A special 'courtesy account' has to be set up for that student to submit the re-take.

Information about edTPA:

edTPA equipment for CWE students

CWE student teachers need to approach Nina Woods at CWE for equipment rentals (on reserve at the front desk). The students should contact her directly to make a reservation and pick up. Her contact information:

Ninoshka Woods
Office Manager
CCNY~Division of Interdisciplinary Studies
at the Center for Worker Education
https://www.ccny.cuny.edu/cwe
e: nwoods2@ccny.cuny.edu

If students have questions, please refer to Professor Vicki Garavuso  vgaravuso@ccny.cuny.edu  212-925-6625 x240

Other Technologies

Information about Blackboard, Zoom, CUNY Dropbox, Microsoft Office 365, Adobe Creative Cloud, Blue Jeans, Smartboard, etc. can be found on the Instructional Technology page of the School of Education.

What is the CCNY IT Service Desk?

The CCNY IT Service Desk, a unit of the Office of Information Technology (OIT), is available Monday to Friday 8am-8pm and Saturday 9am-6pm to assist students, faculty, and staff with all their campus technology needs. Students, faculty and staff can call them with any technology-related problems at (212-650-7878), e-mail ( servicedesk@ccny.cuny.edu ), or visit them in the Student Tech Center in NAC 1/301.

How to change/reset your Email (Active Directory) password?

All information to change the email password for faculty, staff, and students: https://www.ccny.cuny.edu/it/e-mail

Shortcut to the reset page

Acceptable passwords must meet the following criteria:

  • A minimum length of eight characters or more
  • A combination of capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters, that is, any of the following: ` ~ ! @ # $ % ^ & * ( ) _ - + = { } [ ] \ | : ; " ' < > , . ? /

Must NOT contain your ID/Social Security number, date of birth, name, user name, office room number, or extension.

Taskstream Information and Codes

Beginning Fall 2006, all candidates (students) taking courses in the School of Education are required to create and maintain a Taskstream account throughout the span of their enrollment in the program.

Taskstream is an online, web-based folio assessment system that is used by our candidates to document their learning process and to showcase and archive digital products. 

Accounts can be set-up by accessing the following link: www.taskstream.com. For technical support while using Taskstream, candidates can call TaskStream Mentoring Services toll-free Monday through Friday from 8AM until 7PM at 1-800-311-5656.

For on-site assistance, candidates can go to the Learning and Technology Resource Center, North Academic Center 3/226, or the Multimedia Center, North Academic Center 4/221.

Ideally, a candidate's TaskStream account should be set-up prior to the first day of classes.

Taskstream Codes

For Taskstream students need a program code to be able to enroll in the appropriate DRF (Direct Response Folio) to submit their assignments. Activities in Taskstream:

  • Students accomplish assignments which they have to submit via TaskStream:
    for this activity students will need to know the code of their appropriate program.
  • Students prepare for Teacher Certification and need to create an edTPA portfolio:
    for this activity students will need to know the code of their appropriate edTPA Assessment Folio.

All codes can be found at Taskstream FAQ's.

More Information about Taskstream
Taskstream FAQ's

How do I connect an iPad to an LCD projector?

  1. Connect the Apple VGA Adapter with the iPad: Plug the docking connector end of the cable into the dock port on the iPad. Plug the VGA end of the cable into the monitor port on the LCD projector.

  2. Turn on the LCD projector. The projector will display the iPad screen, and you can display the desired content from the tablet through the projector.

 

How can I make my video file smaller (video compression)?

Here is information on how you can compress videos if they are too big:
PC: http://www.edtpa.com/Content/Docs/VideoCompressionGuidePC.pdf
MAC: http://www.edtpa.com/Content/Docs/VideoCompressionGuideMac.pdf

The used application is called Any Video Converter. It is free to download from the links given on the handouts for both PC and iMac. We have it installed on some PCs and MACs in our lab.

If your questions were not answered above, you might find answers in one of our other FAQ pages:

If you still have questions please visit our SoE Virtual Lab Service Desk
Zoom: https://ccny.zoom.us/j/95975009031
Meeting ID: 959 7500 9031
Email:  soelabservicedesk@ccny.cuny.edu
Phone: 646-558-8656