Course Trailers A student engagement initiative

The Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning

Enrich the quality and breadth of teaching and learning - Energizing Eyes High, 2017 – 2022

Keep scrolling down to learn more about course trailers and see a few examples and resources.

What is a course trailer?

A course trailer is a short video that uses multimedia to provide information about the course with the intention of engaging the learner. In two to four minutes, a course trailer should convey a compelling invitation for students to see the essence of the course in relation to the real world, why it’s important for them, and what they’ll take away.

“ The challenge is to present course material in ways that make students do something with the information, interact with it, manipulate the ideas and relate them to what they already know.” - Alison King
Create a course trailer as a strategy for engagement, dialogue, reflection, and action.


Help your course outline get the attention it deserves by creating a course trailer to open your course. Discover the creative possibilities of using multimedia to engage students in making sense of the course and their place in it.


View a series of course trailer samples. Interpret the instructor’s point of view, style, and form. Reflect on the essential concepts of your own course and it’s relevance.


Attend our course trailer workshop or schedule a consultation at the Taylor Institute to explore a deeper understanding of your course. Ask yourself a few reflective questions. What is the significance of the course? Why is it being taught? How are students going to learn in the course? What will students take away from their learning experience?


Draft an outline to visualize a narrative or theme and create a storyboard of ideas to organize a sequence of events for your trailer.


Work closely with a faculty learning and technologies coach to build upon your creative ideas and explore purposeful uses of digital tools, software and technology that will best deliver your message to prospective students.


Use your course trailer to evoke a response from your students. Revisit the course trailer with your students mid-term and include them in a continuous dialogue about their performance and expectations, invite critique, and create awareness of the student’s role in their own learning. Create time and space for your students to respond to the course trailer by the end of the course.


Take the challenge and post a reflection about your course trailer making experience to The Teaching Challenge. Share your work with a community of educators and receive points towards a shiny badge!
Instructors at the University of Calgary share their Course Trailers

Dr. Kiara Mikita from the Faculty of Arts, Sociology

Sociology 401 - TALK about Sexual Assault Course Trailer

Dr. Larry Katz from the Faculty of Kinesiology, Sport Technology Research Laboratory

Kinesiology 213 - Introduction to Research Course Trailer

So, grab a seat and view the resources below to further explore the beginning of your course trailer making experience!
Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning Photographs by Riley Brandt, Joni Miltenburg, Isadora Mok-Kulakova, and Haboun Bair

For further information/questions on course trailers, upcoming workshops or to schedule a consultation please contact:

Haboun Bair -

Learning and Instructional Design Specialist, Educational Development Unit of the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning

Created By
Haboun Bair

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