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Reflection: Video journals

Brief description

In this activity students must keep a subject-based video journal throughout the semester. The video journal is particularly suitable for courses in which the students are engaged in extensive projects. The students may use the journal to reflect on their own academic development and the use of theories in practice.

Motivation for the activity and required outcome

A video journal may motivate the students to relate actively to the project they are involved in, while increasing their attention to terminology and process. The students must use the terminology of the discipline actively, understand what they are watching, and at the same time reflect on how they might communicate this. As a teacher you provide your students with an independent learning situation which may provide you with an insight into their academic development as the semester progresses. The video journal will promote both the students’ subject-related reflection and their oral proficiency.

Performing the activity

  • As a teacher you must introduce the students to the scope of a video journal. This includes length, content and how to submit the videos to you.
  • You must inform the students of items they should include in their video presentations. In this way you make sure that the video content is relevant for your teaching. You may for instance set up requirements concerning the inclusion of certain theories or methods.
  • Select a platform in which the students can submit their video journals. This may be Blackboard or a blog created for the course.
  • On a daily or weekly basis, the students must video record their activities regarding their subject-related project in the course of the semester.  These video clips should be selected by the students for their journals so as to show in brief and highlight the subject-related content of their project work process.
  • The students submit their video journals currently, for instance every day or once a week. This will provide you as a teacher with all the videos in one forum and an easy overview as to which students have submitted their videos. At the same time, you make sure that the students reflect on their own academic skills and learning outcome on an ongoing basis.

Options:

  • Rather than a video, the students may also compile their journal and reflections as an audio file/podcast or as a text and image presentation in a blog.
  • You may require of the students that they include specific content in their video journals: for instance interviews or visual representations of theories and concepts.
  • Instead, video journals may be accumulated and submitted five times in a semester, for instance.

Activities

    Examples of Practice


      You will need:

      • Each student or group of students must have a camera or a smartphone that can record videos.
      • A handout for the students describing the requirements regarding journal content.

      Worth considering:

      • Should the students be divided into groups in connection with the semester project, and in this case, how should they divide the roles between them in the video production?
      • To which extent should the students edit their videos before submitting? Should videos be raw and unedited, or should they be cut and fine-tuned?
      • Should the video journals be attached as annexes to a larger assignment?