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Research Guides

SOC/AMST 251: Racial Regimes in the United States and Beyond


A storyboard is the equivalent of an outline for a paper. When you create a media project, you start with a storyboard.

Storyboards serve the following purposes:

  • Allows you to gather your ideas before you begin working with video or audio content.
  • Encourages you to think about all elements of your digital story: visual, textual, audible.
  • Allows you to quickly sketch and try out different ideas Helps identify resources needed to complete the project and whether you can find them or need to create them yourselves.
  • Generates questions that can help you decide whether your scope is achievable or not.
  • Are works in progress, just like outlines. They’ll change as you work on your project
  • Serve as a quick reference: Did you address all the required elements, such as length and content?

If you’re writing a full script out first, it shouldn’t be longer than 2 double-spaced pages or reading it will take longer than 3 to 4 minutes.

Tools for building storyboards 

Storyboard Templates

2-column storymapping approach - Scroll down to the bottom of the page to Story Table Handouts


Recording Tips

If you plan on including a video of yourself speaking, Zoom will probably work just fine for you. To learn some basic tips on how to improve the quality of your computer webcam recordings, watch this video.

If you have a smartphone, chances are it’s more than powerful enough to record quality video. Make sure that your phone is fully-charged and that you have enough free space to record. To learn about best practices when recording your video with a smartphone, watch this video.

Podcasts, voiceovers, bears, oh my! Take stock of your background noise: fans, A/Cs, dogs barking, kids playing. Do what you can to minimize those sounds — turn off the fan, close doors to muffle loud noises in other rooms. But remember: it's not the end of the world if you can't control the noise around you.

When recording only audio, there are two options:

  • Computer: Record in Zoom, and Zoom will provide an “audio_only” file!

  • Smartphone: Smartphones should have built-in recording apps!

    • iPhone: Voice Memos

    • Android: Voice Recorder

The EarPods that come with most Apple products have built-in mics, which capture your voice just as well as some external microphones do!

Finding Media

If you'd like to distribute your media beyond the classroom, you should search for content in the public domain or under Creative Commons. 

The Media Libguide is a great summary of resources.


What is Creative Commons? Check out this guide or this infographic

Editing Tips

Depending on your computer, you may or may not be able to access video or audio editing programs. Watch the video entitled “Intro to Video Essays” to see an example of a video created with no editing software at all — only Zoom.

No matter what editing workflow you use, remember to collect all the media files you’re using for a video in ONE FOLDER.

Free Video Editing Tools


iMovie, DaVinci Resolve, Openshot


Openshot, DaVinci Resolve, Photos app


Adobe Spark

iPhone/iPad iMovie, Adobe Premiere Rush

Adobe Premiere Rush, KineMaster, Inshot

Free Audio Editing Tools







iPhone/iPad Garageband