Up front I should state that I have been a fan of EditMentor’s founder Misha Tenenbaum’s work since he first founded EditStock.com. I was excited when he first hinted at what he intended with EditMentor, although I did not envy the challenge.
You see, I have a little insight. For a large part of my career I was an educational designer, and came up with the concept and content for our series of “Intelligent Assistants” – ultimately for Final Cut Pro (classic), Boris Red et al, Cleaner and Media 100. Our goal was simple: let people learn how to use a NLE or similar tool, while working in that app.
That took significant work, but by comparison with what Misha and CTO Gor Vardanyan have done it was nothing. Teaching functions in an NLE is easy. Teacher people why they should use those fi\unctions is not easy.
EditMentor is based around a functional NLE, that runs entirely in a browser (specifically Chrome). A NLE interface that is smart enough to report clip, marker and trims to the back-end for scoring! Add in a student management system, and a complete set of tools for building lessons, EditMentor is an amazing technological achievement.
Except, I think that’s not EditMentor’s main achievement. Working through the challenges never feels like learning. The challenges level up slowly, and feel “easy.” Well, they are easy when you read the Challenge and don’t jump ahead thinking you already know what to do! Who would do that? Oops.
EditMentor doesn’t care. Miss an answer, and there’s the explanation as to what is correct. You can go back and retake a challenge after learning the answer, because it’s all about learning. Still uncertain? Go back and review with all the answers displayed!
When learners have the freedom to fail without consequence, they want to learn. If I needed to go over a Challenge a couple of times to work it out in my head, I’d have all the freedom I need.
From an Educational Design perspective, the lessons are well set out, with each Challenged contextualized, before being presented with some “rules of thumb” to use in approaching the Challenge.
Challenges use the full range of NLE tools: navigating Bins, Editing to the Timeline, a Range of basic editing and trimming tools, and a functioning multitrack timeline. Wherever the student progresses, they have a good foundation to take forward to working in any NLE. The Lessons and Challenges are well designed.
EditMentor’s challenge is to going to be to fill out the curriculum, which they are acutely aware of and working hard on.
Although EditMentor is working with some of the top educational institutes there is a free option for individual students. Combined with the readily available phone cameras and editing tool, there’s no reason anyone with a desire to learn editing skills to not learn.
This “quick” review has taken me far too long. I keep feeling that I should add more to it, but each time, I find myself simply repeating myself, raving about how good EditMentor is. If you want to learn, or your role is helping other people learn how to edit video, then you must check out EditMentor.