Flyby Presents: The Gen Ed Course Trailer Awards

Talking Under the Trees
Courtesy of Vimeo

Andrew Richardson, an assistant professor of organismic and evolutionary biology, and Donald H. Pfister, a systematic biology professor, created a course trailer to promote their class Science of Living Systems 25: "Trees, Forests, and Global Change."

While the film industry is gearing up for the announcement of the winners of the 85th annual Academy Awards next month, Harvard professors are showcasing short films of their own as shopping week fast approaches.

Administrators in the General Education program began encouraging professors to make videos advertising their Ged Ed classes following the creation of a popular course trailer in 2008. And since then, the trend has caught on. This semester, 11 videos publicizing courses ranging from Culture and Belief 43: "The World of Yiddish" to Ethical Reasoning 32: "Security" are up and running on Vimeo, ready for your perusal.

We at Flyby have some personal favorites, and in honor of the Academy we've created awards to recognize this semester's best course trailers. Check out these videos while you're procrastinating packing those suitcases.

Best Score: Culture and Belief 56: "The Culture of Capitalism"

From the urgent and almost alarming sounds of the opening sequence to the period band music throughout, this trailer is worth listening to at least once.

Best Use of Photography: United States and the World 26: "Sex and the Citizen: Race, Gender, and Belonging in the United States"

This trailer combines commentary with black-and-white imagery from the civil rights and women's rights movements to transport the viewer back into the American past. Keep your eyes peeled for an especially adorable photo of an interracial couple 0:27 seconds in.

Best Scenic Design: Science of Living Systems 25: "Trees, Forests, and Global Change"

This video isn't new, but it's still the most visually appealing trailer, hands down. Who doesn't love pictures of pretty trees? Not to mention, the two course heads—Andrew Richardson, an assistant professor of organismic and evolutionary biology, and Donald H. Pfister, a systematic biology professor—promote their class in a scene filmed in the beautiful, leafy Yard.

Tags