All of us are “doing more with less,” especially this year, which means that faculty have precious little time to jazz up lectures. One of the resources that really engages students is the use of relevant videoclips from youtube or other online sources. Most of us are no longer showing traditional films that take up an entire class session. With videoclips of 2-3 minutes, students not only get a break from routine, but they can “get” complicated concepts very quickly.

In today’s classes, I showed a TED video of Martin Seligman talking about positive psychology and another clip of Robert Hare talking about the differences between the reactions of psychopaths and normal people to emotional words. In both cases, the films led to students coming to my office hour to learn more about the topics. Hooray! 

The downside of using videoclips is the timeconsuming nature of searching for the right ones. When we did our Instructor’s Manual for Discovering Biological Psychology, I spent many hours sifting through online videos to find just the right ones to recommend. The concept of doing this for all the courses I teach was daunting.

Fortunately, my publisher, Cengage, has put together a great new free resource for faculty they’re calling “Clips for Class.” The clips are organized by psychology topic, such as abnormal, consciousness, memory, etc. A preview of the video is accompanied by a short verbal description of the film. Among the featured films is the viral Bowling Green Classical Conditioning clip, in which a student conditions his roommate to flinch after pairing a sound with being shot with an airsoft gun. The description of the clip includes the appropriate thought question: “What ethical violations may have occurred during the making of this video?”

Clips for Class Makes Lecture Preps Easier

Clips for Class Makes Lecture Preps Easier

 So if you’re looking for ways to include videoclips in your course without spending your entire lifetime searching through youtube, check out the Cengage site. If you have videos of your own to recommend, let me know and I’ll pass them along.