Teaching (With) Videographic Criticism:

The Video Essay Thesis Project

In my Television & American Culture capstone seminar {download syllabus}, students have the opportunity to create their thesis in the form of a video essay. I use the following assignment sequence to structure their work on the project:

Download the thesis project assignment guidelines here (link opens PDF).

Student Work

The following list highlights work done by my students over the last few years. I often include these video essays in my classes to introduce a specific concept or to provide supplementary content.

I also use these video essays as examples for students who are creating their own video essays.

Some Key Concepts in Media Theory:

Video Essays on TV and Film:


Five-minute analyses:

Fifteen-minute Analyses:



Reality TV:



Five-minute Analyses:

15min Analyses:

Melanie E.S. Kohnen

Assistant Professor of Rhetoric and Media Studies

About Me

How do the media industry and audiences interact on social media platforms and at events like San Diego Comic-Con? How do industry and audiences negotiate diversity in film, television, and digital media? How can media scholars reimagine the tools and platforms they use to conduct and publish their research? These questions characterize my research on contemporary media industries, audiences, and digital platforms. My research connects the micro-level of media events, like the site-specific experiential marketing at San Diego Comic-Con, to macro-levels of cultural forces, like the platform economy and the algorithmic processing of human experience.

Blog at WordPress.com.

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