All audiovisual materials must be previewed prior to use with students. The reviewer should give particular consideration to the suitability of the material in the educational context and the age and maturity of the intended audience. Be sensitive to cultural protocols that may be relevant to certain members of intended audiences when previewing materials.

The Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Enforcement Act 1995 and associated amendment acts are the NSW legislation that complements the National Classification Scheme under which audiovisual materials are classified as G, PG, M and MA 15+.

The Department’s Audiovisual material in schools – procedures for use provides advice for schools with regard to the use of audiovisual material including films, videos, DVDs and computer games classified by the Classification Board and Classification Review Board.

The use of classified films, programs and computer games in schools requires the approval of the Principal. The Principal may delegate the approval of the use of C, P, G, and PG material to an executive member of staff but must not delegate approval relating to use of M and MA 15+ material.

This advice should also be applied to any approved school excursions or when external providers use audiovisual material as part of their programs.

Clips from web channels and platforms such as TedEd and YouTube can enhance teaching and learning. Be aware that YouTube is technically only for teens 13 and up, and what the site considers age-appropriate may not match classification standards or educational values.

Apply the advice from the Department’s Audiovisual material in schools – procedures for use before making decisions about the suitability of material for student use.

Sample questions used to review audiovisual and digital media materials may include:

  • What syllabus outcomes or content will be addressed, explored or complemented through use of this material?
  • In what ways is this material age-appropriate and inclusive?
  • What are the reasons you would use this material in a lesson or as part of a program? Could you deliver the lesson or content in another way?
  • Does the material value add to the lesson?
  • What key messages would you want students to take away from the material? Are these messages inclusive and in line with the NSW curriculum?
  • How might this material be viewed by your school community and should the community be informed before using the material?
  • How would you use this material to ensure quality teaching and learning?
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