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Instructions for Video Analysis Projects

  1. Feb 20, 2016 #1
    Hi all,

    I'm going to have my students (algebra-based mechanics at a community college) do a video analysis project and I'm wondering if anyone knows of any resources for good sets of instructions for this type of project. I'd like something pretty open-ended so students can choose their research questions and the videos that they use. However, we do have limited class time (about 9 hours) to devote to the project, so I want to make sure the instructions and guidance are specific enough for the students to get projects done.

  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 20, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Welcome to the PF.

    What video analysis software package are you going to use?

    https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=video analysis software

  4. Feb 20, 2016 #3
    I'll be using LoggerPro. But to be clear, I'm not so much looking for technical video instructions as I am looking for a good set of more general instructions that can help guide the students to interesting and doable projects. Thanks!
  5. Feb 21, 2016 #4


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  6. Feb 21, 2016 #5

    Andy Resnick

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    Are you asking for project ideas? If so, a couple of us considered analyzing trajectories of spinning and bouncing balls: soccer balls and basketballs have clearly identifiable markings and the rotation can (probably) be easily tracked. A few others: analyze the longitudinal oscillations in a slinky by tracking the coil spacing, and the recent Physics Today had a nice article about spinning rings- that could be fun to try, but may be a bit involved.

    In general, the key is to pick dynamic systems that have fairly slow timescales- your video frame rate is 30 Hz or so (some consumer cameras can push to about 100 Hz), so unless you want to invest a lot of time with strobes and image acquisition technique, you should be thinking about objects that move rather slowly. Also, and this doesn't get said enough, but you need to run through a few experiments to get a feel for how your students need to be guided. It's one thing to allow students freedom to explore, but since there is a limited amount of time you still have to establish some kind of framework fort he students to work within.

    Let us know what you all end uo trying- I'm always looking for workable ideas.
  7. Feb 22, 2016 #6
    Hi Andy,

    Thanks for your reply. Those are some helpful project ideas thanks. It will be useful to have some example projects for student to draw on. I'm hoping to have students come up with their own specific projects, but my main concern is that it will be difficult to guide them towards projects that are doable given equipment and time limitations. In particular, I want them to have to develop specific answerable research questions. For example, if they decide they want to analyze a person running, they need to decide what questions regarding running they would like to answer. I can see this being a difficult thing to get students to do well, so what I'm fishing for is some procedures or instructions that will help students refine the questions they are attempting to answer with the video analysis.

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