Questions & Format

Art Criticism

Select one piece of art (painting, photograph, sculpture, architecture, book or film) and explain how that piece has been influential or important in history, culture, or society. In answering this question you will research about different types of influential pieces first, not just the ones you know based on your opinion. When you find one, you will explore the background of the artist and the piece itself. You will analyze and break down the technical aspects and the meaning of the piece. You will give a historical context of when it was created, and you will show specific examples of its influence in modern artists or in our cultural imagery.

Sample thesis starter: _______(a film, painting, book or film) was one of the most influential and important pieces of art in the _______ (modern times, 20th century, 1900’s) because ___________, __________, ____________ (3 reasons).

Future of Technology

Select one type of technology in development (Self-driving cars, Artificial Intelligence, nano-machines, robotic implants, renewable energy) and analyze the positive and negative future effects that it could have. In answering this questions you will back at what people thought about the future current technology (like the internet or cell phones) vs. what actually transpired. You will explain the current state of the technology and theorize about the social, artistic, political, financial and public safety implication of this technology. You must give both the good and negative repercussions as you imagine a future with this technology.

Sample thesis starter: _______________ (emerging technology) will significantly affect the future in a ___________(positive/negative) way because in the future this technology will bring about ___________, __________, ____________ (3 reasons).

Policy & Society

Select one existing state or federal policy (a policy is a state or federal law or local ordinance) that you believe is unfair or should be changed in some way. In answering this questions you will research the background of this policy, why it was created in the first place and explain who it affects. You will need to find specific points of data or articles that show that this policy has a negative effect on actual people. While this will be partly your opinion, you must have specific examples and data to back your claim. Finally, you will propose a way that this policy can be changed.

Sample thesis starter: ____________ (a current law or policy) is unfair or ineffectual when dealing with __________ (problem or issue). A better way to make society better is to change this law in the following 3 ways: ___________, __________, ____________ (3 reasons).


Think about one thing that you would change in education that would make under-represented students more successful or engaged (i.e. technology based classrooms, vocational classes like wood-shop, more funding for particular initiatives or something else?) In answering this questions you will research the history of public education, when it started in the United States and why it was created in the first place and by whom. You will explain Important events in the history of education, such as cases like Brown vs. Board of Education. How would your policy help students? What would it take in terms of policy or funding to get these changes done? How many students would be impacted and how would they be impacted? What should students be learning in school? While this will be partly your opinion, you must have specific examples and data to back your claim.

Sample thesis starter: Education can improve significantly for under-represented students by enacting __________, initiative or program, and it will be effective because: ___________, __________, ____________ (3 reasons).

Video Essay Script Example

Video Essay Script

Share to when done.

1. Question

You must begin your video essay with a question. In contrast to a regular essay where you begin with an introduction that is meant to engage your reader, in video the engagement comes from the visual and the questions itself. The questions will be shown in text over video. Your question must have the following qualities:

  • It must be something that is provable with actual examples and data, not just an opinion
  • It must be something interesting, meaning that it has to be a question that hasn't already been answered or not answered in the way you'll answer
  • Your text should be in a cool font that you find from
  • Your text should stand out from your video background, or your video should be darkened or blurred so it's easier to read. Or your font can be animated.

2. Context

In this section of your script and video essay, you will give the historical or factual context of your topic. Depending on your topic, talk about the history of your art pice and of the artist, or the policy or the technology or of the educational system. Explain the terms or concepts people would be unfamiliar with. This part should be about a paragraph long: 7-9 sentences.

  • You must include at least 3 factual notations, including year, locations, or other biographical facts
  • You must include at least 1 article or book you are referencing
  • You must include video or pictures related to this context.

3. Argument

Remember that your script and video essay are in fact an argument. You are arguing for why an art piece is influential, why a future technology will be good or bad, how a policy should change, how education should change. Here you explain your argument. This is where you place your main thesis.

  • You must include one clear sentence in which you establish your thesis, or your main argument.
  • You must briefly mention 3 reasons or grounds of why you think this thesis is true.

4. Analysis & Proof

In this section, you will prove your thesis by further explaining the 3 grounds of your thesis. You will give data or visual examples. Each ground should have its own section, about 7-9 sentences each with clear visual examples including animation, film clips, pictures or other elements.

  • Each ground should have its own section where the evidence is visualized
  • Each ground should have at least 3 examples that prove that it is true
  • This should be the longest section of your essay
  • This should also be the part that hast the most text.
  • You want to include text, animation, animated pictures or video clips that support and correspond to each point that you are making

4. Conclusion

This section of your script/video essay will be the closing statements. This language should be imaginative and lofty, meaning a bit poetic as your closing statement should be the strongest expression of what you believe. Here the music or sound effects should match your words, the editing will get quicker, and your last sentence should be the most important one of the whole script. That last sentence needs to have an impact.

  • Grand language reiterating your main thesis
  • Images and clips that match the emotion of your piece
  • This part should not have any text.
  • A powerful and convincing closing sentence

What will I be grading for?

The following Criteria will determine a pass or fail on the whole project. All these must be true in order for your video to get a passing grade.

  1. Does your Video Essay have a central argument. This is the most important. If there is only information but you are not make a case the video did not serve its purpose.
  2. Does your argument display at least three concrete forms of evidence to support your argument.
  3. Is your sound clear and understandable? Mumbled or uninspired narration will not get you a passing grade.
  4. No blank sections. All parts that have narration must have visual material or text.
  5. The timeline must consist of a minimum of 50% videos. If most of your video is pictures or text you made a picture essay, not a video essay.
  6. While there is NO time limit or time minimum, your video will end up being around 3:00 minutes because of the length of the script. If your script was so short that your video ended up at less than 2:00, the video will probably not pass.
  7. This project accounts for about 20% of your overall grade. Plus the script and the video traft, That translates to roughly 2-3 letter grades.