Name of of Professor English 21 September 2013 Have You Had Your VSauce Today? Vsauce is an educational website that produces videos explaining scientific and other interesting concepts on YouTube. The target audience includes students and anyone who is curious about how or why certain things happen…
The videos are narrated by the creator of Vsauce, Michael Stephens, in his signature style beginning each video with “Hi Vsauce!” Vsauce provides educational content that is beneficial to students as well as general online users. The content is always interesting and intriguing, and arouses the curiosity of the users. The videos are about topics most people think about but do not try to actively investigate them. Questions about dreams and alien life are used to elaborate scientific research and phenomena because people are naturally curious about these topics. Vsauce videos explain such topics and encourage students to learn about things that puzzle them. Some of the videos that offer such intriguing content are What if You were Born in Space? and Why do We Get Bored?. After watching these videos, viewers are able to enhance their knowledge. In addition, the videos inspire viewers to be more observant of their surroundings. The information in the videos helps students develop greater interest in science and other subjects. Entertainment is one of the main distinguishing features of Vsauce. Michael Stephens appears as the narrator in all the videos and ensures that the viewer remains engaged from beginning to end. The videos uploaded on the channel are informative and provide scientific explanations to the viewer. However, they are packaged in a very different way from regular informational videos. The captions of the videos, for instance, are worded in the same way as feature stories and articles on mainstream websites. This feature helps to attract readers to the content and view the videos to be entertained. For example, a video titled How Many 5-Year Olds Could You Fight? explains concepts of force and power. Another video titled Guns in Space discusses important concepts of space, gravity, and motion. The video discusses the theories and concepts introduced by scientists such as Newton and Einstein. This strategy of combining information with entertainment is the reason why the videos receive a large number of hits. Just two years after its inception in 2010, Vsauce reached a subscription level of 1 million users. The tools used in the videos are effective at explaining the concepts vividly. The videos combine the use of animated diagrams and photographs to illustrate abstract concepts such as gravity and motion. Such use of animated diagrams is effective in explaining temporal features of a concept (Lowe, 168). At times, a comic effect is created to make apparently complex subjects seem interesting. For instance, a video entitled We Can’t Touch Anything uses diagrams and animation effectively to explain atomic structure and contact between two surfaces. Another video titled What Can You do Without a Brain? uses teaching aids as well as animated illustrations to explain brain anatomy and neurological processes. This feature distinguishes Vsauce from other online educational content because it is lively and engaging. It uses techniques other than background narration and text to make concepts more explicit to the viewer. Vsauce makes educational content accessible to the target audience. Accessibility is vital to the success of distance education (Burgstahler, Corrigan, & McCarter, 234). With several alternatives offering similar services in the print and electronic environment, it is important for content providers to reach out to the intended audience instead of expecting ...
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