The challenge for this particular seminar is the audience. It will likely be a mix of production-oriented grad students and those who have no production experience and are interested in documentary from a theoretical and analytical point of view.
I want to the class to be useful to both groups, and I think there are elements of both theory that are important to the production students and ideas about the actual practice of making a documentary film that will be interesting and useful to the non-production students.
But, of course, the non-production students will not have enough expertise (or interest) to support an entire course focused on the filmmaker aspects, and the production students should have the opportunity to practice the craft.
In light of all that, I'm thinking about ways to make the course useful for both audiences.
I plan to have the production students make short projects in a variety of documentary genres, and I was thinking of having the non-production students work with them on both the conceptualizing of the films and the actual shooting. And, assuming the films are any good, I was thinking the non-production students could engage in analysis and critique of the production students' efforts.
But - I want to go further than that. So, I'm not sure who all is reading my blog, but I'd be very interested in hearing any ideas my readers have about ways I can engage and teach both audiences in a cohesive and coherent manner.