By Paul Harris
What inspired you to implement this project?
As a professor, I spend a great deal of my time trying to communicate science to non-scientists (primarily students). I find that this process of translation actually gives me a better understanding of the material I am trying to communicate. I wanted to share this experience with capstone students who have been learning science for several years but have little opportunity to communicate this information with others. This project seemed like an effective way to challenge students and have them engage in that activity.
What were the goals for this project?
The goals for this project were to have students produce informational videos “translating” scientific research into a language and format accessible to a non-scientists. The videos are targeted to a specific audience with the intent of providing them with useful information that can be applied to a particular issue or problem.
Identify the tools used for this project.
Video equipment and editing software.
What pedagogical techniques, strategies, and/or philosophies did you employ?
Having students learn by teaching — in this case, teaching through video.
What were some of the lessons that you learned from implementing this project?
It requires more time than you would expect.
How did this endeavor change your teaching in expected or unexpected ways?
I find that I use more video in my teaching.
What did you change (or would you change) the second time you implemented this project in class?
I simplified the assignment, gave students more time, and implemented smaller film projects to scaffold their learning.
How did this project impact student learning?
Hard to say. Hopefully positively.