BXtra showcases student-created content on their course-related projects, and extra-curricula insights and experiences. It raises the online profiles of our talented students and provides a window on life at Oxford Brookes University.
What kind of content are we looking for?
- We are looking for content that is related to your degree programme / diploma, or related to some aspect of your experience as a student. So, it could be closely related to your course (and could even be a piece of coursework), or loosely related (like study skills advice). Or, it could be about a student society, a sports team, volunteering, or an aspect of student wellbeing, or related to other a co/extra-curricula activity. Social content (i.e., reviews of club nights) is not within the remit of BXtra.
- The content must have been created while you were enrolled as a student at the university / partner college.
- We welcome a variety of formats including blog-style posts (e.g. 200-1000 words), podcasts, short videos, graphics, photo essays, etc.
- The content must not bring the university into disrepute.
- Crucially, the content needs to be interesting and engaging, e.g., original, fresh insights, and/or knowledge/experiences which others will find interesting.
You can create and submit something new just for this site, or you can submit something that you’ve already produced for another platform or purpose so that we can re-share it on BXtra and grow your audience.
BXtra is a great way to boost your online profile, get a spotlight on something you have done, demonstrate your digital communication skills, and help build the Brookes student community.
Check out the guidance below on different content formats.
When you are ready to submit, use this form. Good luck!
Any questions? Email email@example.com
Top tips on popular content formats:
Top tips for BLOGS:
- Aim for brevity – 500-800 words, in short paragraphs, is good.
- Keep sentences relative short and simple.
- Language used in blogs should be informal, but spelling and grammar still needs to be accurate.
- Make sure it has a fairly logical structure and is easy to follow.
- Try to use at least one image to help break up lots of text and keep interest, but make sure it is either your own or is free to reuse (e.g. with a creative commons copyright license). Copyright is really strict for images. Sites like Unsplash provide copyright-free images.
- Remember that you are writing for a non-specialist audience, so explain any complex or specialist terms you are using.
- Do let your own voice, opinions and experiences shine through – that’s what readers connect with and find engaging.
- Most blogs include hyperlinks to related material, to allow readers to follow up on things that might interest them, and access relevant background information.
- Grab readers’ attention with a ‘hook’ – something that might surprise them, such as an anecdote or a detail few would know.
- If you’re including references (more likely for academic pieces), make sure these are all correct.
- Add an estimation of how long it takes to read at the top, e.g., ‘Time to read: 4 mins’. This is a common convention of blogs.
Top tips for PODCASTS:
- Try to record in a space you won’t be disturbed, and with no background noise. Ideally use a mic.
- Try to sound natural and unscripted.
- Think about embedding a jingle or two to help keep attention. You can access royalty-free jingles from sites like Incompetech.
- If you’ve never recorded a podcast before, you can watch our 20 min video on how to record and edit a podcast using the free-to-use software Audacity.
Top tips for VIDEOS:
- If you are videoing yourself or others, ensure the camera is steady, with a clear focus.
- Ensure the visual content is relevant and engaging.
- Ensure sound quality is good.
- Remember that most images are under copyright and not free to re-use. Make sure you use images which are free for reuse or which are your own. The same goes for songs!
- Aim for semi-professional editing, with seamless transitions etc.