Zest in Media Studies

I am writing this to share some of the new developments in modern technology that help enhance teaching and learning and thereby adding ‘Zest’ to media studies lessons.

I am currently using the alternative English subtitle track available via the main menu on most DVD’s to enhance and encourage literacy in media lessons. This ensures that students read as they watch films improving both spelling and accuracy of note taking.
Another useful function available on many DVD menus is the alternative audio track known as a ‘Director’s Commentary’ which enhances students understanding of film making and film language.
An example of this is Ridley Scott’s audio commentary for the film Gladiator where he takes the viewer through a scene by scene analysis of the film making process. The students are then able to take relevant notes while watching the film enabling them to complete a GCSE controlled assessment assignment on film language.
Blu Ray technology has further pushed the boundaries of technology in the classroom for students by enabling the viewing of films in high definition (when set up with a compatible HD television)
High Definition and in the near future Ultra High Definition enable the use of picture in picture(PIP) technology when watching a film in the classroom. This effectively means an extra smaller screen on the TV running simultaneously but separately in conjunction with the main screen. This facilitates direct storyboard planning to finished film comparison as well as enabling students to watch an old classic film on the small screen while simultaneously watching and comparing the modern remake on the big screen(or visa versa).
The DVD and Blu Ray of Titanic has branching digital learning pods which open up during key moments in the film highlighting the production process.

I hope this gives an insight on what it is now possible to do using recent advancements in HD digital disc technology.
Chrys Perera
Head Of Media Studies

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