When you first join the IOV your initial status is ‘Ordinary’ member (i.e. non-qualified). Ordinary Members enjoy all the financial, practical and support benefits of membership – with the exception of being able to fully exploit their membership for commercial gain. To use the IOV logo, and eventually be promoted by the IOV, members must demonstrate levels of competency through IOV Accreditation. Whilst you can remain as an Ordinary Member for as long as you wish, there are definite commercial benefits in progressing through our accreditation system.
5.2 Part One of IOV Accreditation
The initial step in IOV Accreditation requires you to pass the online, multiple-choice, Part One theory exam. This is hosted on the VideoSkills website (www.videoskills.net) which provides free public access to the training material that you will be tested upon. Essentially, the VideoSkills syllabus covers everything the IOV believes you should understand in order to operate as a professional videographer. It is divided into five study and exam categories covering Cameracraft, Lighting, Audio, Post Production and Business & Legal.
Whilst the study material is freely available to everyone, IOV members have access to the exam itself. When you join the IOV you will be supplied with login details that will recognise you as a current member and enable you to take the exam. If you pass the exam your pass date will be noted and you will be issued with a pass reference number. If you wish to continue to Full Accreditation you are required to pay an exam fee and submit an example of your work for assessment. Full details of the study material and exam process can be found on the VideoSkills website (www.videoskills.net).
Please note. The category of Associate Member was discontinued as from 28 January 2015. However, existing Associate Members are allowed to continue to use the appropriate description of their status and logo on an indefinite basis, while being encouraged to move on to full accreditation by submitting work for assessment.
5.3 Full IOV Accreditation
Full IOV Accreditation is achieved by submitting satisfactory samples of your work for Assessment according to a set criteria (see below). It must be applied for within one year of passing your Part One theory exam. Your work will be viewed by a panel of existing Fellow Members who convene at regular times throughout the year. The panel’s main objectives are to grade the submitted video for its content (Suitability for Purpose) and the craft skills used in the production.
Whilst no hard-and-fast measurements can be used to grade artistic creations such as video, the panel’s responsibility is to state whether or not that member has shown a professionally competent level in video production and is able to practically demonstrate the craft skill syllabus contained within the Part One theory exam. In essence, gaining full IOV Accreditation provides you with a recommendation from the IOVs Assessment Panel.
Currently, all Fully Accredited members are listed in ‘The List’ in the IOVs publication, Focus Magazine, and can be searched on the ‘Find a Videographer’ website (www.find-a-videographer.com). Aside from this exposure ‘The List’ is supplied to members of the public and potential clients who approach the IOV for recommended videographers. Other Fully Accredited members also find these services of use should they need the services of another suitably qualified operator. There are three different grades of Full IOV Accreditation:
5.3.1 Master Member (M.M.Inst.V.)
Master Membership is aimed at those looking for personal accreditation. To achieve Master Membership you will have to be able to demonstrate a good understanding of video production techniques (see criteria guidance notes below). The panel will assess various aspects of the production including Titles & Graphics, Camerawork & Lighting, Sound, Post Production and Overall Production Quality. Your submission must be submitted with a completed Assessment Form and Assessment Fee.
If the panel find that the video is of a standard that reflects a common level of production competence (rated 70% or higher), Master Membership is awarded and the member is supplied with a written report, a certificate and an upgraded membership card that reflects the qualification. If the production falls below the current standard, the member is provided with a report detailing the reasons why Master Membership was not awarded and advice on how to achieve it.
If you do not achieve Master Membership on your first assessment, you can re-apply on any future assessment sitting (subject to a maximum time limit of one year from passing your Part One theory exam). There is no limit to the number of times that you can apply for Master Membership. On achieving Master Membership a member may use the credentials M.M.Inst.V. after his or her name and the IOV logo may be used for the purpose of stationery and promotional material.
5.3.2 Fellow Member (F.Inst.V.)
If your Master Membership assessment submission is of exceptional standard (rated 90% or higher), you will be invited to apply for Fellowship. At this point you are still a Master Member, but you have achieved what is referred to as ‘Fellowship Recommendation’. To apply for Fellowship you must send in two further examples of your work with an additional Assessment Fee. If the panel also judge these to be of an exceptional standard (rated 90% or higher) then Fellowship is awarded.
If you have gained Master Membership, but not yet Fellowship Recommendation, you can still apply for Fellowship at any time. This is a two-stage process and requires you to initially send in a single assessment submission (with an additional Assessment Fee), which has to achieve Fellowship Recommendation. You will then be asked to send in two further examples on a following assessment. There is no limit to the number of times that you can apply for a Fellowship.
On achieving Fellowship, the member may use the credentials F.Inst.V. after his or her name and the IOV logo may be used for the purpose of stationery and promotional material.
5.3.3 Corporate Member
Corporate Membership is aimed at larger production companies. The accreditation is awarded to the company or trading name as opposed to the individual. You will need to submit three examples of your work, along with a completed Assessment Form and the Corporate Assessment Fee. The pass mark for Corporate Membership is in-line with Fellowship at 90%.
Once a Corporate Member has been passed by the Assessment Panel, that company may use the IOV logo for the purpose of stationery and promotional material.
5.4 Assessment Criteria and Guidelines
The aim of these guidelines is to ensure that all members who attain accreditation will have shown that they understand, and have knowledge of, the basic technical and artistic conventions of video production. A Glossary of Terms has been provided at the end to help clarify certain points.
i) Fellowship and Master Membership assessment productions should predominantly be the work of the person applying for qualification. This is not to say that it all has to be the work of one person; the governing rule is that the ‘major influence’ should be the person applying. With Corporate Membership the qualification is given to the Production Company.
ii) All submissions must be clearly labelled. This includes the production title, applicant’s name, membership number (where applicable), and contact details. The work has to be submitted online as a streamed file.
iii) All submissions should be accompanied by a completed Assessment Form and relevant Assessment Fee.
iv) The assessment entry can be on any subject matter.
v) The entry can either be produced specifically for assessment, or it can be a previously commissioned piece of work, provided that the programme submitted conforms to the required criteria. Work previously shot but re-worked to meet the assessment requirements is perfectly acceptable.
vi) The submitted work must have a maximum duration of 15-minutes, of which the total duration of the opening and closing titles/graphics should not exceed 90-seconds. Full screen graphics (e.g. animation sequences, charts, diagrams and maps) may be used throughout the programme but may not make up any more than 50% of the programme’s total duration. Any programme exceeding any of these timings may be considered ineligible for assessment.
vii) The assessment is divided into five (5) categories (maximum achievable percentage of the total mark shown in brackets). Each criteria description gives details of what is required for a minimum basic qualification mark in each category:
Titles & Graphics (10%)
Applicants should ensure that titles are readable, with correct spelling, grammar and layout, and conform to recognised ‘safe’ areas on the screen. Any graphics used additionally within the programme should also be clear and readable and should also have correct spelling and grammar.
Camerawork & Lighting (20%)
Applicants will be expected to demonstrate correct shot exposure, white balancing, focus and framing. The applicant will need to show full manual control of the camera. Evidence of a camera’s ‘auto’ facilities adjusting on shot (e.g. auto focus ‘hunting’ or auto iris adjusting) will not be looked upon favourably. Unless artistically justified within the programme, shots are expected to be steady and level; long pans, tilts and use of the zoom ‘on shot’ are to be discouraged.
The programme must include a minimum of two shots demonstrating a relatively shallow depth of field, one of which must be outside in daylight. Although not compulsory, the assessors will look favourably on work also including other forms of artistic shot development, e.g. tracking, crabbing, craning and use of mobile camera support systems. Although not compulsory, applicants should attempt to include some interior shots or situations under mixed lighting conditions to demonstrate lighting skills, as this will also attract additional marks if executed correctly.
Programmes must include a reasonable quantity of ‘live’ audio. This is sound which has clearly been recorded at the time of acquisition and not dubbed on in post production. This audio must be clear and undistorted with particular attention being paid to excluding unwanted ambient sound, including wind rumble.
Post Production (20%)
Applicants are to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of basic editing skills and fundamentals. The applicant will attempt to edit the programme using straight ‘cuts’ and ‘dissolves’. The use of any other kind of transition, especially those of the ‘special effects’ variety, unless justified, is to be discouraged and will not attract favourable marks.
Shots will be expected to be correctly colour matched to each other, particularly if two or more cameras are clearly being used. Applicants must also demonstrate their ability to correctly mix and balance audio of two or more sources (e.g. a music bed/ambient background sounds and a voice over).
Overall Production Quality (30%)
Applicants will be marked on their ability to ‘tell a story’ and to introduce pace and flow into the production. The applicant’s artistic interpretation, capacity to remain relevant to the programme’s subject matter and the overall quality of the programme will be taken into consideration.
ix) The applicant will not be assessed on streaming or IT skills, though the production must be easily viewable.
x) These criteria only apply to Part One theory exam holders who are seeking qualification and current Master Members who are looking to obtain a Fellowship Recommendation. Corporate applicants and those who have already been awarded a Fellowship Recommendation may submit work of their own choosing and not necessarily that which has been specially prepared according to the above criteria.
5.5 Common Assessment Questions
Q. When are assessments carried out?
A. Six times per year – February, April, June, August, October and December (i.e. every two months).
The deadlines are 18:00hrs on the last day of the preceding months: 31st January, 31st March, 31st May, 31st July, 30th September and 30th November, respectively.
Q. Where do we post them?
A. Full details on how to submit work and the costs involved can be found at www.iov.co.uk/assessment.
Q. What happens if I do not agree with or do not understand my report?
A. All queries must be dealt with by email or post. Assessments are confidential and cannot be discussed over the phone. Send a link to your submission with an email (to firstname.lastname@example.org) explaining what you would like further clarification on.
Q. Is the Assessment Panel’s word final?
A. No. If after further explanation you are still not satisfied with your assessment you can have your report referred to an alternative panel whose findings are final.
Q. If I have any general queries who can I talk to?
A. The Central Office (+44 (0)3335 660064) should be able to answer all general queries and can also supply additional support.
5.6 Glossary of Terms
General background sound
The adding of additional audio (e.g. music) to a soundtrack
The system and/or ability of some cameras to automatically adjust picture focus
The system and/or ability of cameras to automatically adjust picture exposure
Also known as mixing audio
The intentional movement of the camera perpendicular to the subject
The intentional alteration of the height of the camera in relation to the subject
Ensuring that picture quality from different cameras / sessions appear similar
Depth of Field
The portion of a picture between the camera lens and infinity which is in focus
The transition between two video sources with a duration of 2 or more frames
The natural ‘storytelling’ progression of a video
The sharpness of a picture/the act of causing a picture to be in focus
The composition of a shot within the video frame/the act of framing
Shots which are level relative to the natural horizon
The mixture of lighting sources with different colour temperatures
Live sound as opposed to recorded or ‘dubbed’ sound
Mobile Camera Support Systems
Equipment other than a studio camera pedestal or tripod used to carry the weight of the camera and which allows the operator to move the camera whilst ‘on shot’ or recording. Systems include jibs, cranes and Steadicam.
A piece of music, sometimes low level, used to enhance a video. Mainly used in ‘corporate’ type programmes
The perceived speed at which times passes within a programme.
The area within the video frame which is considered not to be effected by domestic cut-off
The relative darkness or brightness of a shot
Transition between one shot and another with a duration of 0 frames
The movement of the camera either towards or away from the subject
The change between one shot and another
A piece of recorded speech used to inform the viewer or enhance a video presentation
Adjusting the camera’s ability to accurately reproduce a picture in accordance with the current ambient colour temperature