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Refugee video – Preparing for student issues videos

June 4, 2011

In my communication class, I have students make two videos in a group project. The first video is about norms across cultures. This video involves students in identifying norms that differ among their cultures and making a video about those norms. It is an informative video and helps the students learn the basics of amateur video making. Generally, the students enjoy the outcome although there is some to much frustration along the way in trying to learn a new technology along with presenting their point. I give them lots of room to learn from the mistakes and keep going on. This experience prepares us for the second step.

This week we began the second step which is to make a persuasive video, which I call an issues video. To prepare for making the video we analyze some videos to determine what the problem is, what solution is proposed and how the problem and solution are presented. We look at the use of facts and logic, emotion, and whether the video presents something concrete to do, in other words, steps to take. I like to use the Story of Stuff video along with some shorter videos from YouTube. Also, this time and occasionally in the past, I used a video I have worked on off and on concerning refugees.

Refugees are an issue that I feel some comfort and discomfort in advocating. I spent almost four years working for the International Catholic Migration Commission in an UNHCR refugee camp in the Philippines. So I made a video about refugees.



It is admittedly amateurish, but it attempts to include the elements I want the students to use in their videos.  I also show them videos made by previous classes for analysis and encouragement.

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