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Quality Assurance

Promoting Accuracy

A strength of UC ANR that Californians depend on is the accuracy of our content. We have a history of producing reliable, researched-based information from our staff and academics.

Video production, just like fact sheets and presentations, needs to convey accurate information. 

There are several ways to approach quality assurance in our videos. The route you decide to follow is largely based on the intended use and audience of the final product. This is no different than text-based content.

Essentially, our how-to videos will come in 3 classes:

  1. Peer-reviewed educational videos, typically 7 to 30 minutes online, presented on a platform managed by UC ANR. These videos can be professionally produced or self-produced. Each will be identified as peer-reviewed in the video and its associated notes. Analogous to peer-reviewed publications. (See this page for more information.)
  2. Short, self-produced informational videos, typically 2 to 10 minutes, presented on a platform managed by UC ANR. Analogous to popular or trade press articles.
  3. Self-produced content aimed for a local audience hosted outside a platform managed by UC ANR, for example a county page, blog, or social media. Analogous to blog posts or newsletter articles.

The first type will be managed by a formal peer review, so accuracy and quality assurance will be handled through that process. Types 2 and 3 still should be timely, accurate, and reflect well upon UC ANR's programs.

This section of the course will review expectations for quality for non-peer-reviewed videos.

Basic Review

Review of videos for quality is not a complex process and shouldn't deter anyone from making videos. No one expects how-to videos to be at the same level of production quality of a professional filmmaker!

Essentially there are 4 key things we encourage you to review:

  1. Is the audio clear? You may need to adjust sound levels or add noise filtering during the edit. In the worst case, you may want to re-record the audio for a section. (Ask for help before panicking. We may be able to help you fix small problems without re-recording.)
  2. Is the video stable? (As in: not-shaking.) 
  3. Is the content accurate? Have a subject matter expert (it could be you) review the material for technical correctness. Remember that pesticide recommendations require special review.
  4. Is the content practical? In other words, is the language and terminology appropriate for a non-expert audience? Are the steps complete and doable? Having another person view the video to make sure they understand it is an easy solution.

In most cases, this will provide sufficient review. If you deem your topic as being controversial or you have questions about its reception by an audience, it doesn't hurt to have another set of eyes review the video. This could be another academic or staff in Strategic Communications. 

If desired, a more complete checklist can be found in this document: QA Checklist . Another document reviews standards for audio/visual quality in more depth, which may be helpful for a beginner: AV Quality Criteria

How Can I Share an Unfinished Video for Review?

There are two simple ways to share a video that may not be ready for upload so that you can get feedback from others. 

The simplest is to render the video in a small size format (less than HD) so that file size is small. You can then upload the video on Box and invite a reviewer to share it. 

Another method that is easy is to export the video to YouTube, but make it "unlisted" during import. After uploading and encoding by YouTube has completed, just email the link to the video to your reviewer. 

It is best to wait for any review to be complete before working on captioning. 

If you need help with a video, these are also techniques you can use to share a video in progress.

Another technique that you can consider to have technical correctness reviewed is to share your script/storyboard with a reviewer. If there are changes suggested, this will take less work to incorporate them than re-editing a whole video. This is how the "Canning Beans" video was reviewed.