Music Educators Journal Video Review Guidelines

Music Educators Journal (MEJ) is soliciting video and DVD reviews written by its readers. Please comply with the following guidelines in requesting a title and submitting a review:

Assignment of videos and DVDs: Reviews will cover videos and DVDs received in the MEJ editorial office. Reviewers must be MENC members. MENC members interested in writing video reviews may request a list of available videos from MEJ editorial staff. Videos and DVDs will be assigned and sent to reviewers on a first come, first served basis. The reviewer will be able to keep the video or DVD unless the video distributor requires review copies to be returned. Reviewers will be assigned only one review per calendar year.

We prefer that reviewers not review videos developed by friends or acquaintances; if reviewers do know someone involved in production of the video, that relationship must be disclosed to MEJ. We also prefer that reviewers not review videos that compete with books, videos, or other materials developed by the reviewer-any such conflict of interest must be disclosed.

Writing the review: Watch the video or DVD, including any bonus features. Provide a brief summary (2-4 sentences) of the video, but focus mainly on reasoned critique in the review. Discuss the video’s strengths and weaknesses. Provide details to support your praise or criticism. Do not simply say the video is interesting or useful. Offer specific examples of what is interesting or useful about the video. Avoid jargon and overly technical language in your review whenever possible. If technical language is required, define the terms used. Reviews must be between 200 and 400 words. (The word count includes the introductory information included with every review.) Use video reviews previously published in MEJ for guidance in writing your review.

Be sure to answer the following questions in your review:

  • What is the goal or purpose of the video?
  • Who is most likely to find the video useful?
  • To the best of your knowledge, is the information in the video accurate?
     

Other questions that you might want to consider as you write your review include the following:

  • How well does the video live up to the promises on the back cover?
  • Are there supplementary materials included with this video? How helpful are these materials?
  • How does this video relate to other videos in the field?
  • Are there other more useful videos available on this topic?
     

Editorial and publication policies: MENC editors will edit reviews to ensure conformity with the reviewers’ guidelines and MEJ style, which is based on The Chicago Manual of Style (15th ed.), published by the University of Chicago Press. MEJ is copyrighted as an entity, so authors must transfer copyright to MENC. Due to space limitations in the print journal, some reviews might appear on MENC’s Web site. The video review editor makes the final decision regarding publication of any review submitted.

Additional information: To obtain a list of videos currently available for review or to request a title for review, contact Caroline Arlington or call 800-336-3768, x310.