Qian Wang in Asian Studies incorporates student produced video


Qian Wang
Students felt these videos are more interesting than the textbook videos and are a great source of learning.

–Qian Wang, Instructor and Director of the Chinese Language Program

Back Story

CHIN101 and CHIN103 are the introductory level Mandarin Chinese courses for non-heritage speakers. Students start to learn Mandarin from the basic greetings and daily conversations.

How did you use the videos in your course and what made you decide to do this?

Despite the population of Mandarin speakers in Vancouver, it is still very hard for students in these classes to have enough input of Mandarin Chinese that is appropriate for their level. As part of the Flexible Learning project, we decided to make some video materials that are written for our students and can be shared with all future students that are taking the same level of classes.

We invited CHIN101 and CHIN103 students to write their own skits. With the support and help from Arts ISIT, we were able to record these skits performed by our own students in a recording studio with a green screen. To make the videos look more professional and help students better understand the context, Arts ISIT assisted with the post-production and added sound effects, emoticons, graphics and backgrounds. To facilitate students with their learning in a flexible way, subtitles in English, Chinese, and Pinyin (the sound system) were also added.

What has been the result?

These videos are shared with all instructors and learners at the same level of Chinese classes. Instructors assign videos as homework, use them for listening comprehension in exams, and also use these as examples for their own students to make skits. Students felt these videos are more interesting than the textbook videos and are a great source of learning.

Do you have any advice for instructors hoping to implement this in their course?

Making student-centered videos can be challenging. It would be easier to schedule only two or three groups for recording for each term. The recording studio is not of a big size so it will be important to encourage students to make skits that won’t involve exaggerating movements.