A Behind the Scenes Look At QUOnline’s Latest Video Production

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Published on: July 29, 2011

Almost immediately after starting full-time work for QU Online in May, I was handed the project of creating a video to assist faculty in recognizing and handling distressed students. Tackling such a large project required planning… A LOT of planning.

Coming Up With a Script

It was during my first week of work that I sat down with Carol Boucher, the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, as well as a group of counselors, to explain the project and gain assistance with the content. Over the next few weeks, I worked with Carol Boucher and Dr. Kenneth Wenning, a counselor at Quinnipiac University, to come up with a script for the video.

Casting and Overview

By the end of May, the script was, for the most part, complete – so it was time to move on to the casting. Let’s face facts; finding talent for the video was a project in itself. I had to make sure to find appropriate talent for the main roles, as well as for the “background” (to get a classroom feel). Coordinating times for filming wasn’t easy either, as, naturally, people are on different schedules.

The video begins with an animation (which I created in Adobe After Effects), followed by an introduction, and then four scenarios. Each scenario depicts a different type of distressed student, and a professor that intervenes effectively with that student.

Filming and Editing

I used two cameras to film the scenarios, so that I could shoot at different angles. After filming each of the four scenarios, I edited them (I use Final Cut Pro for most of my video editing) – and then sent them around to the rest of the Instructional Design team at QU Online for feedback. Editing each scenario right after it was filmed proved to be very effective for me. It allowed ample time for feedback, and also prevented me from having to sort out hours of footage all at once.

Next up was the filming of Carol Boucher, Dr. Kenneth Wenning, and Jennifer Zitser (another counselor at Quinnipiac). Carol Boucher provided the introduction and conclusion for the video, and Dr. Kenneth Wenning and Jennifer Zitser provided the counseling comments. I filmed them against a green screen so that I could cut out and replace the background when editing the clips. A tip for those of you filming with a green screen: Make sure the people you film do not wear any shade of green close to that of your background.

Wrapping Up

After I finished putting the video together, I circulated it several times for feedback, and made the appropriate changes until I arrived at the final version. It must be known that I never could have done this project without the help of my colleagues at QU Online, Student Services, and the Counseling Center. Thank you, everyone!

You can watch “Distressed Students: What to Do” on YouTube.

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