This course provides students with the opportunity to collaborate in the development of a small creative work/media production project (short-form documentary) around a contemporary social issue or Sustainable Development Goal. Working through the entire production process, students will take on the role of a production company undertaking research and developing a project plan for completion of the video, including identification of the target audience and dissemination strategy. Professional practitioners and faculty help the students by providing insights on contemporary practice involved with media production and support with technical and production issues.
Students are free to decide the thematic focus of their documentary and past topics have included poverty in Osaka (SDG1), gender equality in Japan (SDG5). The course emphasizes self-directed learning, student-led research, professional management and personal responsibility throughout all stages. Students develop new skills and techniques in media production including how to operate a camera, how to set up a video shoot, how to edit a video, script-writing and narration. The course requires that students undertake research on social issues and the SDGs and consider how best to apply contemporary media theory and practise.
In today’s digitally connected and busy world, video is increasingly employed as a powerful communications tool. It is estimated, for instance, that YouTube has 2.3 billion active users and that everyday people watch 1 billion hours of video on Youtube. This implies that video documentary production is an effective way to share insights on social issues and the SDGs. It is importat that university students are provided with the opportunity to master this technical skill set.