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Thread: How to making an examiners job easier?

  1. Default How to make an examiners job easier?

    For a GCSE in Physical Ed, these days instead of examiners going to the school to watch the pupils, they want video evidence sent on DVD. Our school's film contains a dozen or so pupils doing various sports. It is two hours long and has to fit on ONE DVD.

    I intended to simply render it as WMV @ 3mbps, so the resulting file would be a couple of gig, and then just burn the file as a data DVD. This will be fine for the purpose, and I'm sure that our video will be easier to view than a lot of videos they receive from other schools (I've heard of schools sending in tiny resolution mobile phone footage, and even sending blank CDs by mistake).

    However, the icing on the cake would be to include chapters and a menu, so the examiner can navigate a little. Or if not a menu, perhaps some kind of 'next' and 'back' points to mark each section.

    But, I don't want to mess about actually creating a playable DVD. I've never done it before, and it seems like a giant hassle and very time consuming.

    So what are the available options if I'm burning the video as a data file?

    Last edited by -Anti-; 02-07-2011 at 12:45 PM.

  2. #2


    If it's a data disk you can not make chapters. Either splits the video into short clips or write out a time sheet for them to read what is what where and when.

  3. Default

    Thanks for clarifying that. I got some very confusing answers whilst Googling this subject.

    I think what I'll do then, is actually create the time sheet as a media item and insert it at the beginning of the file, because I don't think they have the facility to cope with bits of paper 'n' stuff when distributing these videos to the examiners.


  4. Default

    Thanks for your reply. Very helpful insight.

  5. Default

    I have wondered at the wisdom of entrusting teachers with the responsibility of producing video evidence. I can't imagine why the exam boards assume that schools have the necessary equipment, or that teachers have the time or inclination to develop the necessary skills, or that they actually have the time to plan, co-ordinate, film and edit all this footage.

    The PE teacher at our school, for example, wouldn't even be able to turn the camera on and off if I hadn't stepped in to help; he is light years away from being able to edit and burn. Although admittedly he's a bit of a technophobe, I can't picture any of the other teachers knowing what to do either. Further, since our school doesn't have any computers good enough to edit the footage properly (and because Windows Movie Maker could open the MOV files anyway), I ended up taking it all home on my own laptop. I've spent over twelve solid hours on it so far, all my own time, and we're only half way through the activities!

    The next few weeks will be fun, as I start to receive the externally shot footage in all sorts of weird formats and resolutions. Not only that, I'll have to watch hours of random stuff just to pick out the most relevant footage based on a given list of criteria. Then I'll have the students hassling me for missing out parts they wanted kept in (and I'll have to re-edit because if they fail, I'll be left wide open for blame).

    Not fun. When this PE teacher leaves the school and the new one arrives, I'll definitely keep my mouth shut. lol.

  6. Default

    > There's also another snag here - you're being expected to select relevant footage based on criteria - but this is the teachers job

    I do the first edit, obtaining what I think is all the usable, relevant footage, and then it goes back and forth between me, the PE teacher
    and the pupil, cutting stuff out until they're both happy with it. Which means a lot of re-editing, but I don't see any other way - neither
    the PE teacher nor the pupils have the equipment, skill or time.

    > then that's a pretty big responsibility to place on you

    Absolutely. That's why I've spent so much time/effort on it. I don't mind taking technical responsibility, but the PE teacher has to write
    the accompanying notes and commentary, and also has to ensure that enough criteria have been met. It's not as bad as it sounds though.
    The footage I initially cut out is quite obviously irrelevant to the criteria. Where they film the same criteria twice, or where there is overlap,
    I keep it all in, and let them decide what to erase in the next edit, and eventually pare it down to 15 mins. Also, we aren't butchering the
    footage - the clips' length is left as long as possible, showing a true reflection of the performance, good and bad. So it's not as if I'm having
    to do dozens of micro-edits, choosing very specific action to include or omit.

    > Nowadays, a school without decent IT facilities is very rare

    We're a private international school in a somewhat 'under-developed' region. I'm actually doing this PE project as research into what kind of
    software and video equipment the school should buy for next year, with something like a 1000 budget. However, I doubt any training will be
    made available, nor will anyone be given time out of their timetable. It's just the culture that things somehow 'get done' if you want to
    keep your job safe.

    > I assume that you might be a technical person at the school

    No. I'm actually just a part-time classroom assistant. We have an ICT tech, but he doesn't have the time or equipment, and doesn't know
    anything about video anyway.

    Thanks again for your input. Very helpful, and it's given me lots to think over.
    Last edited by -Anti-; 02-03-2011 at 06:41 AM.

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