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Types of Web/Interactive Media

Program Content Companion | Online Course, Workshop, Tutorial, or Lessons | Digital Library

It's best to develop Web or other interactive components of your educational outreach project for flexible use. As a video producer, you may be inclined to organize these materials according to the structure of your video program, but remember that an educational audience may not use them in this manner.

It may be helpful to think in terms of several different types of Web/interactive components:

Program Content Companion

Web and other interactive formats such as CD-ROMs are effective for presenting complementary content or recasting the video content in ways that a linear program can't (such as providing interactive games, songs on demand, and learning activities). A program content companion can help your viewers answer the questions your program raises in their minds. Remember, though, that since users may not necessarily see your video in conjunction with these materials, the Web/interactive components must also function as stand-alone resources. You can, however, use the content of your program as a starting place for building these components.

In addition to their use to a general audience, the elements of a content companion site can be incorporated into more formal educational structures (see Online Course, Workshop, Tutorial, or Lessons). In classrooms, they may serve as helpful curriculum supplements, especially if they can be used in a modular way.

To enhance the educational impact of your video, consider including a viewer's guide as part of these materials. Because a viewer's guide can't serve as a stand-alone experience, most projects choose not to expend too many of their resources on this -- but it might be appropriate for a site with a small budget.

Example of a companion Web site:

Online Course, Workshop, Tutorial, or Lessons

These Web or interactive materials are aimed at more formal educational use, in classrooms or for professional development. They may make use of the elements you develop for a video content companion site. Those using materials of this type most likely proceed through them in a linear fashion, since they're structured around a particular curriculum.


Digital Library

Digital libraries present resources of various digital media types in a database, where users can find specific items of interest through menus of topics and subtopics or by searching for particular terms. It may be possible to create a topic-specific digital library based on the resources you've developed or acquired for your project, or you might provide these resources in formats that allow them to be incorporated into a larger digital library. For more on this, see Building a Digital Library.


In this section:


>      Types of

        Media Elements

        Writing for
        Children's Web Sites

        Web Production
        & Distribution

        Web Budgeting
        & Scheduling



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