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‘M.E’ Filming Methodology

This is a first draft of the M.E filming methodology. For my research of Micro Events (M.E) i decided to take videos. Here I have begun to establish a method for the videoing. The method will ensure that all of the filming sits on even ground and can be viewed and analysed in a similar fashion.


Capturing micro events will form a large proportion of my research for semester one. I began with trying Visual Sociology in the form of photography and participant observer studies. Quickly I discovered that this method, whilst useful for capturing still shots, could not capture a whole event. Micro events can occur in any amount of time, from 10 seconds to 10 minutes, and I needed to find and establish a method for capturing their randomness. Through videoing I found that I had a more successful medium for capturing the micro events of interest. I think it will also be useful to establish a M.E (micro event) videoing methodology- ‘M.E methodology’ to be followed through all videoing completed. This way, I can analyse the information I gather in context of each other, and establish some formality within my research.

  1. Video

The video should act as an eye to a situation that can be returned to and used for continuous research and inspiration.


  1. Analyse the location of filming. Ensure that there is clear access for videoing and that any objects vital to the film are present
  2. Brief the participant. Explain the action that you are wanting to film and what you will be doing whilst the task is being completed. The participant should have no prior knowledge of other participants results and should be encouraged to play out a normal course of events
  3. Turn camera on and motion for the participant to begin.
  4. Follow participant throughout entire event. Event can be shot over 2 shots if required.
  5. Motion for the end of filming and turn of camera.


  • The researcher should play no role in the film, and be careful to avoid prompting any action or result.
  • The filming itself should be of 1 or 2 shots, clearly showing the event of interest.
  • The film should capture the event, as well as general surrounds and a person’s body.
  • The film should also clearly capture the lead up to the event and the finish, not just the actions of interest. Be sure to capture an entire event, not just snippets.

The film should capture any noise relevant to the situation, including talking from the participant

2. Editing

    Once all footage has been shot, its needs to be viewed and edited for optimal use.


    1. Download all footage to a suitable viewing and editing platform
    2. View all footage
    3. Group footage into tasks
    4. View footage in task groups
    5. Remove footage that is unnecessary and will not be useful to the enquiry
    6. Place selected footage into a video/movie making package (windows movie maker or similar)
    7. Save as movie file


    • Unnecessary footage could include instances of no action- finding a shot, motioning to the participant that filming has begun etc.
    • Footage can be sped up. When the video sequence has been established certain clips can be sped up to make viewing easier. Examples could include walking from one location to another, or running a tap. To be decided at researchers discretion.
    • The film should be a simple research tool. The use of special effects/creative editing is not required.

    • 3. Analysis

    The analysis stage lets the researcher decide upon what he/she will take from the task. This stage transforms the films into the research tools that they are.


    1. View each movie as a separate piece
    2. When viewing take rough notes on key events
    3. Record the events in detail. In writing, discuss their importance and why they are being highlighted.
    4. Watch the video in reference to the idea of time and motion studies (Frank and Lillian Gilbreth). Highlight Therbligs and discuss (specific motions involved in the task) how they could be altered to improve efficiency.
    5. Record ideas or innovations that result from viewing the film. These can be done first in writing and then explored with simple and quick sketching.


    • The notes/discussions/ideas/sketches should be contained within one document that sits beside the film for viewing

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