CMS 3720: Streaming Video

This assignment focuses on a YouTube genre that is sometimes called vlogs: videos produced by independent creators who include themselves as a central character.

The video you create for class should include you as a central character (either through voice over or your on-screen presence).

The video’s topic can be many things. In the past, students have done cooking, gaming, and other how-to videos, fashion and hair-care tutorials, movie reviews, political statements, etc.


Your video should be between 1-3 minutes long.  In addition, follow these tips to ensure that you record high-quality  footage:

  1. Use a horizontal aspect ratio. If you use a phone or tablet, turn it sideways so the video is wider than it is tall.
  2. Find a quiet place. Bad dialog recording is the most common problem with amateur video.
  3. Find a good background. It should be neither too busy nor too boring.
  4. Keep camera movements to a minimum. “Shaky cam” footage does not compress well. If someone else is holding the camera for you, stress that she/he needs to keep it still.
  5. You’ll need LOTS of light, but if you shoot outside, try to avoid direct sunlight.
  6. Look directly and consistently at the camera or to a point just to the side of it.

For more help, take a look at the many good tutorials available on YouTube, including How to Shoot Good iPhone Video. Other good tutorials include one by Crutchfield and the iPhone Video Tips page. (Some of these are keyed to specific devices like Apple’s iPhone, but all include useful information no matter what device you are using.)

Uploading your Episode to YouTube

YouTube maintains a very useful How to Upload Videos page, with links to directions for computers, iOS, and Android devices. Each set of directions includes a link to a separate page about privacy settings.

Required Metadata

Once on YouTube, your video should include the following metadata. All should demonstrate best practices as discussed in class.

  • Custom Thumbnail
  • Title
  • Description
  • Tags
  • Hashtags
  • Captions


  1. Upload the video to your YouTube user account by 11:59 p.m. on the date listed in D2L. Make sure the video is set to either “Public” or “Unlisted”
  2. By this same date and time, post the video’s URL in our D2L “Streaming Video URL” discussion topic. Use the title of your video as the title of your discussion thread.


Your video will be evaluated based on the following criteria. (Note that a significant part of your grade will come from the metadata added after you upload to YouTube.)

  • Content
  • Video quality
  • Audio quality
  • Vocal delivery
  • Thumbnail
  • Captions
  • Other metadata
    (title, description, tags, and hashtags)