Overall, I was impressed with the videos made by last year’s students. They all presented interesting information about the chapters in the book. I found that there were similarities between the good videos and similarities between the bad videos. The better videos used similar features to present their information in a well constructed manner and the weaker videos were lacking on certain aspects. I believe “Towards an Uncertain Future” and “The Terror” are the best videos and “Caudillos Versus the Nation State” and “The Meeting of Two Worlds” are the worst videos.
I was very impressed with the “Towards an Uncertain Future” video. I feel like there was a lot of effort put into making the video visually pleasing. There were relevant photos, videos and smooth transitions that occurred at appropriate times. There was also text to go along with the speaking when important terms were discussed to make sure the viewer paid attention to the particular subject. The speaker of the video had a very clear voice and spoke smoothly with little accidental pauses or breaks. Also, there was music accompanying the visual and auditory commentary to make the entire video come together. “The Terror” had similar strengths to “Towards an Uncertain Future”. It presented relevant footage of the topics discussed and the photos were well selected to match the commentary. The commentary in this video was also clear and concise, with background music to fill in the breaks of commentary and help the video flow well. The general components of both of these videos that led me to believe they were the best are good photos and videos, complimentary music, clear commentary and smooth transitions.
On the other hand, “Caudillos Versus the Nation State” and “The Meeting of Two Worlds” missed some of these important components. In “Caudillos Versus the Nation State”, they simply recorded themselves talking. Even though the information being shared was valuable, the setup of the video made it hard for me to feel engaged in the presentation. There were not any visual accompaniments and the audio was difficult to hear. The same issues and others arose in “The Meeting of Two Worlds”. The two presenters recorded separately in their own rooms and it was obvious they were reading off of paper. There wasn’t any background music so when there was a pause to show a picture, there was an awkward silence.
Even though some had issues, I still think the content of the videos was good! But when analyzing the quality of the video construction, there were definitely issues in a couple of the presentations.