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Today's video viewers are very sophisticated, and video programs must look like "real TV”. Digital video effects and computer imaging will help hold the viewer’s attention. An educational/instructional video program must inform in an entertaining manner. But keep in mind that a viewer’s attention span to absorb general information from TV is limited.

There are several types of documentaries:

  • A "hard news" documentary uses hard-cut editing (no visual or audio special effects).
  • A more elaborate documentary style, the "news magazine" approach, uses visual effects and/or computer graphics to provide entertainment value in covering smooth transitions to topics.
  • The most costly approach to a documentary program, the "Entertainment Tonight" or "MTV" style, requires combining digital video effects and computer generated images to enhance program information transitions.

An effective video program can be produced to meet its objectives using simple to elaborate media support. Accordingly, the cost of a program can range from frugal to expensive. The completed Video Program Description Worksheet will provide the basis for developing time and cost estimates and a production schedule.