Dominican University’s Big History Program

We worked with Dominican University of California to tell these 4 stories about their Big History Program, an innovative engaged learning course that captures the history of the world – from the Big Bang to present. Dominican is using these videos to show prospective students, university supporters and other schools the impact their program is having on students and faculty.

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Concept: Dominican University of California asked us to produce several videos about their “First Year Experience: Big History” (FYEBH) program, a course required of all incoming freshman.   The course tells the story of our world from the Big Bang, through the formation of stars and planets, through all of evolution and major world events, and takes students to the present time.  And it’s not structured around textbooks and sitting through lectures, but involves active learning, on-going faculty collaboration, and a focus on critical thinking.  We needed to produce a video that communicated the intricacies of this program for multiple audiences.

Execution:  To accomplish this, we proposed four two-minute videos:  an overview; one focused on faculty collaboration; one on engaged learning; and one on critical thinking.  During a three-day shoot, we interviewed humanities professors who are being asked to teach science, and science professors who are teaching writing; we shot the engaged learning classes as they happened and spontaneously interviewed students about their experiences.  We shot a faculty collaboration session and individual faculty interviews.  We interviewed Dr. Mojgan Behmand, the current Director of the project, as well as Dr. Cynthia Brown, a former Dominican professor and one of the people who has literally written the book on Big History.

Distribution: The videos had multiple audiences: prospective students, supporters and other universities who want to take the lead from DU’s innovative program.  All videos were shown live at DU’s Spirit Week, the audience being parents, freshmen and faculty.   The videos are embedded on the Dominican web site as well as the FYE: Big History Facebook page and You Tube channel.

Success:  The result is a video campaign that has been getting much attention and thrills Dominican and all the participants in their FYEBH program.

TrimTab Media has been an amazing partner in developing compelling videos that bring our campus, students, and story to life. Iliani and Mischa are exceptional at incorporating all the necessary information but also conveying the human story… It is evident when working with Iliani and Mischa that you are working with individuals who are mission-driven, while also very professional and diligent… Not only will you thoroughly enjoy the process of working with TrimTab, but you will be awe-struck with how well the final video will deliver your message and move audiences to tears and laughter.

– Maureen Keefe – Director of External Relations, Dominican University of California

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