8. Introducing two video producers

At the end of last year, I wrote about Stephen Haggard that some of you remember from the 2016 conference in Berlin. In the mean time I have had a chance to look at his materials during the LBF and I was impressed by the quality of the material and the way it has been prepared for use in class. So, if anybody needs EFL content, please read this:

A new way for textbook publishers to acquire authentic video as a study component is on offer from Digital Learning Associates. The company (whose co-Founder Stephen Haggard was keynote speaker at EEPG's 2016 conference) makes it easy and affordable for mid-size regional publishers to gain market share through a compelling video proposition.

Curriculum-aligned instructional video is popular with today's smartphone-native learners, who watch over 60 YouTube titles a day according to Trifecta Research 2015 and most European schools today are equipped for video or can rely on pupils being able to watch at home. Up to now, bespoke commissions were the only way to acquire video assets of high educational quality. EEPG delegates told Stephen that they wanted to enhance the role for video in their titles but couldn't afford it, so DLA has developed an "off the peg" model in which publishers can choose assets from a syllabus-aligned catalogue and acquire a license just for their territories.

Stephen told EEPG: "We're spreading the cost of production over multiple territories, which means that even on modest editorial budgets, at the heart of every course unit there can be a really high quality video, with engaging authentic characters and proper alignment to the syllabus, for just 600 Euros".

DLA calls its new approach Ready to Run video, and each film licensed comes complete with a publisher pack of elements for supporting video-centred pedagogy, including teacher and student materials, and worked-through activities for blended and flipped learning design.

Acknowledging that some ministries remain conservative about school deployments of video, DLA has pushed alignment to curriculum and best practice modern pedagogy. The model allows for publishers to re-record the narration tracks - for example to include required terminology.

The first Ready to Run product line is in English Language for course starts in September 2018. There are 30 titles aligned to CEFR levels A2, B1 and B2+. The next subject area to receive this treatment will be STEM for 2019 course starts. Stephen explains that DLA favours the use of authentic video sources to bring freshness and creative energy, and to ensure media-savvy students don't feel patronised and switch off. The materials are purchased by DLA from sources such as global broadcasters and popular vloggers, and then re-edited with support from subject matter experts to create short films that support key syllabus points.

The ELT publisher offer can be viewed and sample video and resource requested here.
Trifecta Research 2015 here.

Another video production company I came across at the same time is Tellus Vision from Sweden. They have gone a different way. For a number of languages (English, French, German, Spanish), they have produced scripted and semi-scriped video content as well as a soap opera and documentaries about different subjects. For new productions, Tellus finds interested publishers in different countries, who then share the production costs and influence the content.
However, now a lot of their very nice content is not under exclusive licence any more. That means that you can buy or licence individual clips and material. See here for English.

Some of it might be a tiny bit dated, but the way it is presented, the careful control of language and the lively characters appealing to children, teenagers and some cases adults make these clips very attractive. Clips can also be bought or licensed individually. I have most of their material on DVD and can send it on. Or contact Anna Nordqvist.

Hope to see you all in Helsinki!

Berlin, May 2018