Assignment is worth 10 percent of course grade. 

You and your partner will shoot each other demonstrating how to perform a simple task, such as how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. How-to videos are a staple of online news and information sites. This project will provide evidence you have mastered the five-shot sequence technique in order to prepare you to report, shoot and produce your final video project.

Elaboration: We’ve talked about the five-shot sequence in class, and you’ve read in Briggs’ “Chapter 8: Telling Stories with Video” how five-shot sequences can help create a narrative as part of an online news video.

For your assignment this week, you’ll create your own five-shot sequence of any action you want. And just to make things interesting, you don’t have to limit it to just you and your partner.

Pick any person you want to video who is actively doing something. It might be a librarian at work, an athlete practicing, a tattoo artist completing a tattoo, a student doing homework, a person playing a guitar, etc.

NOTE: You cannot stage any action. This must be natural. This is part of an assignment for a journalism class, and you must never stage any photo or video in journalism.  That said, you must ask the person permission and explain to them that the video will appear on your blog — on the Internet.

The five-shot sequence is:

  1. Close-up of hands.
  2. Close-up of face.
  3. Wide shot.
  4. Over-the shoulder shot.
  5. Creative shot.


  1. You must shoot the shots in this order. Then you will edit the shots in this order.
  2. Once you edit the shots, post them on YouTube.
  3. Embed the video onto your blog.
  4. Write a short blog post describing the process. Describe any challenges you faced with this video. Analyze how this can be used in a larger news video.
  5. Be sure you reference Briggs and one other published source of your choice. The Poynter article “How Journalists Can Improve Video Stories with Shot Sequences” is one such source. The handout distributed in class about the five-shot sequence by Andrew Lih is another possible published source.

Due date: Friday, April 11, at 5 p.m. Email to me at