Teaching Geoscience with Video Snips
Video snips are short video segments of live footage of geologic processes (settling sand, cleaving minerals, or landslides) used to engage students, foster discussion, and stimulate higher order thinking skills. This activity page connects to an existing collection of video snips on key topics for introductory-level geoscience courses AND the activity sheets that accompany them to ensure students engagement and assessment.
Links to these videos and video tutorials are used in introductory earth science undergraduate courses for non-majors.
Skills and concepts that students must have mastered
None (mostly). Students answer questions in a video tutorial during and after viewing each video. Each video tutorial is a standalone exercise. Each video tutorial is designed to engage one or more levels of Bloom's revised taxonomy of cognitive skills.
How the activity is situated in the course
Video snips have been created as relatively short segments, from one to several minutes in length so that they may be used multiple times during a typical lecture period. Students are given a handout with questions and the video tutorial. Students then view the video snip, and discuss their observations with peers. These short exercises may be completed in about 5-10 minutes. Purposes of students viewing video snips and completing video tutorials include introduction and reinforcement of cognitive skills, including observation, interpretation, analysis, and short answer response. Video tutorials may be used for individual or group responses, and for formative assessment. Links to videos and video tutorial documents may also be used for a distance-learning environment.
Content/concepts goals for this activity
An overarching goal for students taking an introductory earth science course is to understand "how the earth works." Multimedia video snips provide students information through multiple input channels (e.g., sight, sound) that have the potential to make concrete the many properties and directions of dynamic change of earth systems. Sample content includes understanding cleavage in minerals, the angle of repose, weathering, mass wasting, and igneous rock formation.
Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity
Multimedia presentations present factual material for observation and interpretation, data for computation, and visual patterns for analysis and evaluation, among other cognitive activities. Video snips may be exploited on many different levels of Bloom's revised taxonomy, according to the needs and constraints of the students.
Other skills goals for this activity
- Benefits of peer discussion accrue when video tutorials are designed as in-class exercises for small groups of students.
- Written student responses to video tutorial questions on a handout reflect language skills, and may be used for formative assessment.
- Much of these video snips are based on building skills of scientific inquiry, in particular observation, followed by evaluation (and distinguishing between those).
Description and Teaching Materials
Teaching Notes and Tips
References and Resources
These links provide additional information about teaching with video: