Virtual Course Tour

CVPA is working towards making short introductory videos for its courses. These videos will provide students with a virtual tour of a course. For many, this will be pre-recorded audio read by the instructor paired with images/video of student work. Our example CVPA course tour was made for Scott Ahrens’ Information Design course, along with the assistance of Full time Lecturer Lara Henderson and students Corbin Blanchard, Armani Marquez-Chaves and Mike Venuti. The video is posted above. There is a universal template that follows CVPA branding and is easy customize. Lara is working with faculty on the development of their video along with her students in Fall 2020’s Digital & Material Processes course at UMass Dartmouth.

  • Jan Fairbairn
  • Ziddi Msangi
  • Stacy Latt Savage
  • Stephanie McGoldrick
  • Otto Metzger

What is a virtual course tour

  • 1- 3 minutes
  • reviews learning objectives and outcomes, major assignments, course culture
  • includes examples of previous student work
  • important course information
  • follow CVPA branding

What is the goal of course tour

  • to introduce the course students who are enrolled
  • to be a tool for advising
  • to be linked in COIN

First steps: 

  • Collect student content on collaborative one drive folder. You will probably need more student examples than you think, as each image will only display for quick amount of time.
  • If you have already written your syllabus, that could serves as a start for script. What are the “need to knows” about the course? Write your first draft of your script.

Example script for Information Design course:

Hello. I’m Scott Ahrens. Welcome to information design. In this class, you’ll learn to pull meaning out of data to create beautiful and informative posters, entertaining, interactive web sites, and innovative phone Apps.

We live in a culture that continually bombards us with information. Our senses are constantly engaged by technologies that bring messages to us faster than our minds can process them.

As an information designer, you will help make the world a more understandable place by editing, organizing, and contextualizing the information that surrounds us. Using aesthetic, organizational, and technical skills, you’ll work to break complex information down into manageable pieces and then search to discover the best way to share that information in a clear, concise, and compelling way.

Information Designers work on a wide variety of interesting and important projects: from simple charts and graphs to complex way-finding systems. In this class, you’ll design an impactful infographic poster, create a highly interactive web site, and invent a brand new phone App.

We’ll take an in-depth look at Information Architecture: the ordering, structuring and relating of data.

Next, we’ll examine Information Design: the visualization or representation of information.

From there we’ll learn about User Interface Design and how to make clear and efficient controls to interact with digital content. 

And finally, we’ll master best practices in User Experience Design and learn how to create design products that are easy to use and a delight to experience.

This is an action-packed course! You’ll start out making simple charts and graphs and build up your skills and knowledge with new information presented each week. Before you know it, you’ll be designing fully interactive web sites and phone App prototypes.

Our class will meet synchronously via Zoom teleconferencing software every week. We’ll use these live meetings to introduce new material, collaborate with classmates,  and review progress on your design projects. All of the materials you’ll need for class are posted on the class web site. These materials include: assignment sheets, important due dates, readings, video tutorials, and other useful reference items. (shot of scrolling through teaching web site:

I’m really looking forward to sharing all of this knowledge with you and I can’t wait to see your unique, creative solutions to these challenging design projects. 

So let’s go ahead and get started. I’ll see you in class.

After you complete the script, fill out the five additional items below. This will give us more content to work with and allow for shared elements across videos.

Course Details:

  1. Course name: Information Design
  1. Pithy quote: Information design pulls meaning out of data.

Bloviating quote: Information design—in its widest sense—is about the selection, organization and presentation of information to a selected audience. An information designer is a transformer of information—whether of raw data, a set of actions, or a process—into a visual model capable of revealing its essence in terms which an audience can grasp easily. – Richard Saul Wurman

  1. Course Description: Information Design is an introduction to the basic concepts and methods of Information Architecture (the ordering, structuring and relating of data) and Information Design (the visualization or representation of information). Through assignment, lecture, and discussion the course will address issues of visualizing information and transferring knowledge within the frameworks of static, interactive and temporal media.
  1. Course Objectives:
    1. To explore the visualization of information across a variety of media;
      (show student work samples)
    2. To investigate various methods of organizing and presenting data;
      (image of L.A.T.C.H. theory and sorting methods) 
    3. To become adept at the transfer of complex information in a clear, concise, and visual way;
      (show charts and graphs, infographics, websites?)
    4. To consider design from a user-centered point of view;
      (show people using digital devices)
    5. To become sensitive to the strengths and limitations of differing communication media;
      (show 100 things posters and web sites)
    6. To promote clarity and usability in the creation of on-screen interfaces.
      (show App prototypes)
  1. Assignments:
    1. Statistical Self-Portrait
      (learn to make basic charts and graphs, strengths and weaknesses of each type, quantitative display of information)
    2. 100 Things Poster
      (learn how to organize large amounts of information using L.A.T.C.H. theory, strength and weaknesses of print)
    3. 100 Things Web Site
      (learn strengths and weakness of web media, basics of UI/UX, site map, wireframes)
    4. Phone App Prototype
      (using media convergence to innovate, intermediate UI/UX, process flow diagrams)

 For ADA accessibility , all videos need captions. Fastest way to do captions is by posting your video content to youtube, but it isn’t always the most accurate. You can also do them with video editing software