Making a Video @ OSU

My grade school teachers always said, “For every person who raises their hand, there are probably 10 people who have the same question.” So when 3 different people in a week emailed me asking how to make a video, it’s time to write an article for you all!


  • Zoom out and think about the arrangements you’ll need to make. Read 12 Steps to Making a Video.
  • Create a storyboard or some sort of simple outline of your video as a whole. This is essentially a map of your video, and will guide you in deciding what you need to shoot and record.
  • Ask yourself: What criteria must my video meet? What message am I trying to convey? What elements can I include to effectively convey that message?

Learn How

  • Vimeo provides a great overview about the video production process, including equipment use.
  • Digital Union offers free access to tutorials on whichever video editing program you choose; our lab offers iMovie, Final Cut, Premiere, and Windows Movie Maker.
  • For beginners, we usually recommend iMovie. It’s easy to learn and has all the features you’ll need for a basic video project. Best of all, Apple’s website has a complete set of free tutorials on how to use the program.

Get Equipment

  • Depending on the quality of video you need and your recording conditions, your smartphone, tablet, or webcam might be a sufficient camera. Otherwise, you can borrow equipment from Classroom Services.
  • If you need to record a voiceover, you can walk in or reserve our Whisper Room recording studio. If your recording needs to be made elsewhere, you can borrow a hand held voice recorder from Classroom Services. Again, depending on your recording conditions, your smartphone or tablet may be sufficient.
  • A green screen equipped video recording studio can be reserved through Media Services.
  • If you choose to edit at the Digital Union, bring a portable hard drive to store your files. Ideally, your hard drive should be: 7200rpm, portable, and connect via USB 3.0 or Firewire 400 (or better). If you’re in a pinch, a large capacity USB drive will often work fine. On campus, you can buy these from WiredOut or the Wexner store on campus. Standard definition miniDV video footage is 13 GB/hour so do that math and make sure you buy a drive of sufficient capacity. Read this to learn more about hard drive specs for video editing. A note on hard drive format: drives that are marketed as being compatible with Mac and PC are formatted in FAT32 or MS Dos. This allows you to access the drive from either Mac or PC, but has a 4 GB file transfer limit, which you’ll probably exceed with a video project file. Format your drive in ExFAT if you want to keep it accessible between Mac and PC without the 4 GB limit. Format as NTFS for PC use only or Mac OS Extended Journaled for use with Mac only. Formatting a hard drive erases it, so be sure to move your files elsewhere while you format the drive.

Put It All Together

  • Come to the Digital Union for editing & assistance from our staff; we’ll help you decide which program to use, and assist you with the editing process.
  • If you don’t have proper editing software on your own computer, reserve time to work on a computer at the Digital Union; walk-ins welcome.

Stay Legal

Publish Your Video

  • If your video is for a class, Media Services will host your video for free; you give them the video then they send you the URL to share.
  • Media Services can also help you host your video on iTunesU.

If you are an instructor thinking about assigning a video project to your class, read 9 Steps to a Successful Video Assignment. For more specific information regarding your project, email to schedule a consultation.