Project Master Class

I went to college as a violin major (at first) and every Friday we had Master Class. All the students that studied with my violin teacher met each week and a few of us played a piece we were working on. The teacher, and sometimes visiting teachers, would share their thoughts on the performance as would the other students.

I think you can see where this is going…

Your media project is likely broken into some developmental chunks:

  1. Finished main recording/shooting
  2. Building the storyline and thesis, research question or theme
  3. Rough draft edit
  4. Nearly completed project

Depending on your professor or instructor’s preference we may have a session where you will show your project in its current state and have a critique provided by your instructor, the media and web professionals working with your class, and your fellow students.

Often the critique responsibility is split up as follows:

  • Instructor addresses the discipline specific content in the thesis/research question/theme and the body of the project. Is what you’re saying meaningful and meet the project’s goals.
  • Media pro’s point out the good and bad in the recordings and edits. Are the media methods contributing to your story? Is the tech added meaning or just flashiness?
  • Everyone talks to whether the project is compelling and getting its message across, and what could make it event better. The audience knows best! Read Prendergast’s discussion of the “Sixth Paragrah” to learn about the real meaning of project. While she talks about writing, it works well in video.
  • Suggestions for the next steps – thoughts on editing style, additional content to be recorded and added, keeping the story tight and reaching the correct audience.

There may be a specific set of guidelines, or rubric, put forward for your project to address specific aspects within the discipline your class is in. This often will be used if there’s mid-project grade involved.

The important thing is to keep things positive while still providing informative and guiding feedback – this goes for the instructors, the media people and you. For most people in your class creating a media project like this is new so take that into consideration. All of us can always make our work better if we expose it to the world as it’s being developed.

Making instructional media successful