Not Another Brick in the Wall: Teaching and Researching the Audio Video Essay


Required Fields

Not Another Brick in the Wall: Teaching and Researching the Audio Video Essay

19-20 November 2018

According to Vilém Flusser (2014), the “gesture of making” constitutes a kind of thinking with one’s hands; in this symposium our aim is to consider the effectiveness of the audio-visual essay for facilitating creative and intellectual enquiry in film, television, and media studies. The symposium will include:

•          a screening of audio-video essays

•          hands-on interactive workshops on video essay best practice

•          papers and presentations

Keynote Speakers: Adrian Martin and Cristina Álvarez López

Panel Presentation: Sean Redmond and Jo Tai, Deakin University: Assessing (with) The Video Essay: A Pilot Case Study

Brief Overview

The audio-video essay has become a central pillar in the way that film, television, and media scholars, in particular, publish their research since it allows scholars to:  

Explore the ways in which digital technologies afford a new mode of carrying out and presenting film and moving image research. The full range of digital technologies now enables film and media scholars to write using the very materials that constitute their objects of study: moving images and sounds (Grant et al, 2014)

The audio-video essay is also used increasingly in schools, colleges and universities, in the arts and humanities, as a rich and invigorating ‘non-standard form’ of course assessment and mode of creative and intellectual enquiry. The reason for this development is fourfold: first, applied knowledge and understanding is seen to foster the best learning outcomes; second, assessment logo-centrism is seen to fail many students, particularly those with little cultural capital from low socio-economic backgrounds; third, in a highly mediated modern world, where screen presentations occur in all walks of life, the audio-video essay is seen as an incredibly important transferable tool; and finally, it is born out of a recognition that learning and understanding is not a closed book and that the audio-video essay fosters resourceful, open learning.  

To date, however, there has been very little research on the use, value or impact of the audio-video essay on learning and teaching. Research has been carried out on video production as an effective learning and assessment tool (see Elizabeth Mavroudi and Heike Jöns, 2011) but nothing that fully examines this particular form. Similarly, within education research, there has not yet been a move to presenting research findings through this method.

The Research questions that thus energise this symposium include:

  • How might use of the audio-video essay as a mode or tool of teaching improve students’ educational experience and learning outcomes?

  • Does the audio-video essay work as an empowering assessment item within the arts and humanities disciplines?

  • How might it be taken up in STEM disciplines?

  • Do students view it more favorably than written or examined forms of assessment?

  • How might we best employ the audio-video essay to represent our scholarship within education, and the disciplines we represent?

More Information
Contact Name Claire Perkins
Contact Email