08 Jun Production of Instructional Video
Recently, I had a meeting with someone about a request from their client for the use of instructional video; and, an interesting sticking point came up. We were talking about filming an instructional interview using our video production and editing services. This potential business associate was relatively adamant about using only a single camera on the subject and no other video or interactions.
I bowed out of the work and his comment was ” but this is what my client wants and don’t you do what your client wants”. I’ve thought long and hard about this conversation. And, while I believe that we should always listen to our client, I also believe they should always hire us for our instructional design and technology expertise. I would do them a disservice by providing them with a product that I know is an exercise in futility. Our experience and expertise indicates that this type of video has no instructional value — an audio recording would possibly be better and cheaper, a white paper even less expensive.
While I didn’t get to finish that conversation with that person, I have continued it in my head. And I’d like to share a piece of it. Here is some of what I’d have said…think about the last time you watched the news or a movie. Do you watch the newscaster talk for 20 minutes? No you see “b roll” — you see headlines — in other words, you see action — you see pictures. Did you see the main character in a movie talking on and one for 15 or 20 minutes?
All video, particularly instructional video, is better suited to action. A video of an expert talking about the actions or a “voice over” is a great thing but it all needs to be focused on the learner “learning something” — not only watching/listening to an expert. It will not be a successful learning event. I would also suggest including instructional “stop/actions” in our video. It turns video, which is a relatively passive media, into an opportunity for knowledge and skill transfer.