Reading Reflection: An Idea for Academic Reading Videos

I made this video on one of our reading this week. As I was reading that paper, I was making graph in my mind, so I really had an “impulse” to make a video. It’s not a very polished video, there are pulses in my speaking here and there, because I didn’t write a script… It only represents my personal interpretation for this paper. I just want to express one idea using this video.

I worked really close to education and visualization because of my research, however, I feel, we researchers produced so many active learning strategies, so many fancy graphs for others, but we (PhD students) are still learning by mainly if not only reading texts. I deeply acknowledge that reading is very important for being a researcher, but, what if some of us are not “learning by reading texts” type? In fact, in terms of learning style, a lot of us are more visual than textual.

Social media is to change the structure of enterprises, education, and many others in a fundamental way, what about academia? There is a well-established set of rules about how to do research, then what about how to learn to do research? Can that be changed?

So, I am having this very immature idea: traditionally we read papers and discuss them in class or in some research seminars, what if we all create very short videos about papers we read and put them online, YouTube or maybe we can establish a video repository for researchers to archive videos.  Videos will be self-organized using tags. We don’t need to do videos for every paper we read, just ones we think are interesting. Researchers can discuss and exchange ideas based on the videos. What if, in the future, all papers will be published in video format? So readers can have a closer look at the experiment environment and others? I know texts exist for a reason, it’s abstract and concise, and it conveys lots of meanings in a packed fashion, but will there be at least some supplemental manners? I know Journal of Engineering Education starts to include an author video introduction for some guest editorials (http://jee.org/2011/July/01). Should we make research more fun? Will the structure or rules of academia be changed because of modern technologies in some manner?

After creating this video, I remember one colleague has mentioned that she wanted to create some video for our History and Philosophy in Engineering Education readings. I am not sure whether she has done so or not. If this idea will be successful in some manner, I probably need to acknowledge her.