Center for Global Education
Johnson Center, Room 235
George Mason University
4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030-4444
We are located on the second
in Room 235 in the Johnson Center above the food court.
Use a catchy title. Make the title unique, consider using questions and lists.
Use interesting visuals. Include an image or video in your blog. This will get people's attention and help them better understand the content of your blog.
Include links. Links add depth and credibility to your articles and allow you to show a little 'link love'.
Use bullets, italics, and bold font. This makes for an easier read. Using bold font allows the reader to quickly scan your post.
Let your personality come through. This is what makes your blog unique.
Make blogs short, otherwise your reader might take one look at your post and bolt. If you choose to make your blog post long, consider breaking your blog into parts or use bold font to highlight the main points of the blog. This point is about readability.
Reference your articles. If you use other people's work, include a reference or link to their article.
Be interesting and have fun. Your enthusiasm for a topic will likely come through in your writing and make for a more enjoyable read.
Encourage comments. Engage your reader and develop a relationship with them. This can be as simple as ending your post with a question. The key here is to make it easy for the reader to leave a comment.
Post tags. This will help your readers find you.
Respond to comments as soon as possible. Treat your reader like a friend. If your friend calls you and leaves a message, do you wait days to respond?
Make your blog post easy to share. This may include adding widgets such as Tweet, Reddit, Delicious, Stumble Upon, etc.
Post frequently. This helps keep your blog fresh and entices search engines to index you more often.
Promote your blog. This involves posting your posts to bookmarking sites, such as Stumble Upon and Delicious. Use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest etc.!
Be deliberate when making camera moves. When panning and zooming, use slow, smooth, and deliberate motions. Take a shot of something and leave it there for 10-20 seconds, stop the recording, and take another shot. This will make your videos much more watchable. Remember to be patient and let the shot happen—you never know what you may get!
When we're shooting videos, our hands tend to vibrate a little. If you’re too shaky you can make your viewer nauseous. Use a tripod if you have one. Another way is to brace yourself against something like a wall, or perhaps stoop down on your knee while filming.
Don't limit your shots to one angle or size only.
Following this video formula will help your audience see a location, a specific setting within that location, and your story or testimonial in that place. If you can, look for a landmark, a sign, or natural monument that will show the viewer where you are. If you’re in Paris, the Eiffel Tower would provide a nice back drop. Next, approach your subject from all angles. Before you hit the red RECORD button, check to make sure you can fit everything in the frame that you want to. Do this as you would if you were taking a still picture.
A lot of image quality problems can be solved by light. Use natural or available lighting whenever possible. Make sure there is not bright light like the sunlight directly behind what you video. If your subject is standing in a bad lighting situation, have them move into better light if possible and the video will look much better.
Interviews can provide good insight through the actual words of those studying abroad. When interviewing a friend, avoid a loud environment like a busy train station because the audio will be hard to control. Ask specific questions that will solicit specific answers.
Here are some good ones to keep in mind
What do you feel like you’re learning abroad that you can’t learn here?
What has been your favorite site visit so far? Why did the program go there?
Try any new food you’ve never had before? Where or what was the occasion?
Any shattered stereotypes? Any surprises about the people/place/history?
Tell the interviewee NOT to look at the camera. He/she should just carry on a normal conversation and keep eye contact with you. This may seem awkward but it works really well and it is how almost all professional interviews are done. When you frame your subject, remember to leave plenty of space in the shot to allow the interviewee to move naturally and nod or gesture. This way their face or movements won't slip out of the shot.
Tell your story through the images you shoot.
The types of clips CGE is looking for are
Your LIVING situation abroad
What’s the view like from your dorm or hotel window? What’s a day in the life of the program like? For example, walk us from your room to a site!
Be our tour guide and show us a favorite spot or two!