Slicing and Dicing: Using video editing software to teach film

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Rochelle Rodrigo
Jamie Henthorn


Traditionally, formal film analysis is taught by watching films and identifying and analyzing formal film elements either in class discussion or course papers. Having students use video editing software by “slicing and dicing” existing films enables them to incorporate applied practices into their critical analysis, building confidence in their ability to identify and discuss formal elements of film because they have used these elements to create videos of their own. Even with a variety of video editing software available, few studies exist on using video editing software as a pedagogical tool for teaching film, specifically teaching formal elements about how films are put together and make meaning. This study gauges students’ perceptions on learning basic film studies concepts from more actively engaged “slicing and dicing” activities as compared to traditional reading, viewing, lecturing, and discussion activities.

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