Studies of the effectiveness of video in formal learning environments have yielded some confusing ideas, namely that content acquired via video consumption doesn’t easily transfer to the medium of text (Fisch 2002; Koran, Snow & McDonald 1971). This doesn’t mean students aren’t learning from the video (or the text for that matter), but it rather suggests that the design of each medium may impact how the brain processes and stores the “lessons” from said medium, disrupting seamless transfer from one form to another.
This suggests that video consumption would more readily transfer to video production, or even video as a means of assessment. Similarly, the reading of a text naturally transitions to text production and text-based assessment–or so some research suggests. How this works in your classroom is ideally a matter of your own experimentation, and a matter of voice and choice for the students. In lieu of these data, inter and intra-media interaction from texts, images, voice, video, and other existing and emerging digital and non-digital forms represents a significant opportunity for innovation and creativity. Books, twitter, YouTube, poems, text messages, Meerkat, tweets, and other physical and digital aesthetics all matter less in form than they do in function–all represent and enable nuanced idea expression.
Like reading a text, video comprehension is a matter of decoding, but with different symbols based on unique modalities. Light, sound effects, scene cuts, dialogue, voice-overs, video speed, music, and more. How should students approach a video? How should they watch one? What should they do when they’re done? More largely, what viewing comprehension strategies should students use to promote close viewing? What can they do to increase comprehension and retention of video content so that they are able to repackage meaning into other media forms?