Creating a Successful Brown Video Introduction: A Full Guide

Interview handshake
April 26, 2024
5 min read
Expert Reviewed


Reviewed by:

Mary Banks

Former Admissions Committee Member, Columbia University

Reviewed: 4/26/24

If you’re curious about the Brown video introduction and how to prepare for it, we’ve got you covered! This article will go over some information, tips, and sample prompts to help you know what to expect. 

If you’re considering Brown University, you know that getting in is challenging. You’ll find yourself in competition with students who want that acceptance letter as much as you do. So, what can you do to stand out?

As you take the time to put together your application package for Brown University, you’ll be invited to submit an optional two-minute video introduction as a part of your application. 

You might think that this is another extra step that you don’t really have to take–after all, your acceptance will ultimately be based on your academic success–transcripts, grades, and SAT scores, right?

This might be true, but submitting the Brown video introduction could be just the thing to push your already stellar application to the next level. This article will discuss how you can create a successful video introduction that leaves a lasting impression!

How Important is Video Introduction in Brown’s Admission Process?

The video introduction is an important part of Brown's admission process. Though it is optional, submitting a strong video introduction will help you stand out from the crowd. 

Brown receives a staggering number of applicants each year. In the 2022-23 academic year alone, Brown received over 50,000 applications. However, with the university accepting only around 2,500 students, competition is fierce, to say the least.

In such a highly selective environment, any chance to leave an impression on the admission committee is worth taking. A thoughtful video introduction allows applicants to showcase their personality, motivations, and suitability for Brown University in a way that may not come through on paper.

The Brown Video Introduction

Brown used to have an alumni interview program that it has since gotten rid of. Instead, you’ll be given the opportunity to share a bit about yourself through a brief video introduction for Brown University. 

The purpose of the Brown admissions video is to give the admissions committee a better picture of who you are; this includes hobbies, interests, and accomplishments that might not have made it into your application. 

You can use your Brown University video introduction to talk about moments and experiences that have shaped you as a person.

Brown University

How to Prepare a Script for a Video Introduction

Preparing a script for your video introduction can help you convey your message clearly and effectively. Here's a straightforward guide on how to prepare:

  • Introduction: Start by introducing yourself confidently in front of the camera. Begin with a simple greeting like, "Hi, my name is [insert name] from [high school]." This sets the tone and immediately lets the viewer know who you are and where you're from.
  • Content: Decide what key points you want to convey during your video. Consider talking about your academic interests, extracurricular activities, passions, and why you're interested in attending Brown University. Highlight unique experiences or qualities that make you stand out as a candidate.
  • Structure: Organize your thoughts in a logical order to ensure coherence and flow in your presentation. You can structure your script by starting with a brief overview of yourself, followed by discussing your academic interests, extracurricular involvement, and concluding with your motivations for wanting to attend Brown.
  • Language: Use clear and concise language that reflects your authentic voice. Avoid overly formal or scripted language; instead, aim for a conversational tone that feels natural and genuine. Don't hesitate to inject a bit of personality and enthusiasm into your delivery.
  • Length: Keep your script within the two-minute limit specified by Brown University. This requires you to be concise and prioritize the most important information you want to convey. Practice speaking at a comfortable pace to ensure you stay within the time limit.
  • Practice: Rehearse your script several times before recording your video. Practice speaking naturally and confidently, paying attention to your tone, pacing, and body language. Familiarize yourself with the content so you can deliver it smoothly without relying too heavily on reading from the script.
  • Visuals: While the focus is on your spoken content, consider the visual aspect of your video. Dress casually as you would for a typical school day or event. Ensure good lighting and clear visibility by positioning yourself in front of your camera or device. Record your video in landscape orientation for optimal viewing.
  • Review and Edit: After recording your video, review the footage to ensure you're satisfied with the final product. Check for any technical issues, such as audio clarity and visual quality. Make any necessary edits to refine your presentation before submitting your video introduction.

By following these steps and preparing a well-thought-out script, you can create a compelling video introduction that effectively showcases your personality, interests, and enthusiasm for attending Brown University.

Brown University Video Introduction Prompts

While there is no particular format or topic the admissions committee is hoping to see, here are some Brown video introduction examples of prompts you’re suggested to choose from:

  • What do you love about your neighborhood or hometown? (This prompt is especially useful for international students!)
  • Share a time that you were moved by music or art.
  • How would your friends describe you?
  • Describe how you were influenced by a book that changed your perspective.
  • Talk to us about a meaningful family activity or tradition.
  • In what ways are you similar to or different from your siblings or friend group?
  • Tell us about your favorite time of day. 
  • Highlight any topic of your choice that will allow us to get to know you better.

The purpose of this component is to simply add depth to your Brown portfolio. Video introductions can’t necessarily be wrong, but what you choose to share will impact how you’re perceived. Be authentic in your video introduction, keep your answers concise, and highlight what you think will impress the admissions committee the most! 

Brown Video Introduction Deadline

If you choose to complete a video introduction, you must submit it within one week of receiving your application acknowledgment email from Brown that contains your login credentials. 

While you won’t be able to upload the video until you receive these credentials, you’re highly encouraged to record the video anyway to upload it as soon as you receive them. 

Tips on How to Nail the Brown Video Introduction

The video introduction is fairly freeform and serves as a strong asset that can get you one step closer to getting into Brown University. With that said, here are a few pointers to help you create a stellar Brown video submission:

  • Clothing: Brown suggests you wear something you would usually wear to class. Keep it casual and true to yourself.
  • Length: Make sure your video is no longer than two minutes.
  • Orientation: Make sure your video is in landscape. 

It is also important to note that although your video won’t be assessed based on its production value, there are still some do’s and don’ts to keep in mind as you film your video introduction. Make sure you consider the following: 

  • Location: You can choose to record indoors or outdoors–just make sure your background is clean and free of any distractions. For instance, you might want to avoid recording in a room with a lot going on in the background. This might be distracting to your viewer and ultimately take away from what you have to say.
  • Framing: As previously mentioned, make sure you film in landscape and that your face is in the center of the frame. If you’re using your phone to record, make sure you prop it up on your table or tripod. Do not hold it up in selfie mode as this can be distracting and come off as unprofessional. 
  • Lighting: Make sure your video’s lighting allows the viewer to see your face clearly. Especially when outdoors, avoid recording at night or in places where the light source is behind you. It is always best to have your light source in front of you. 
  • Sound: Finally, make sure you’re recording in a place that can capture your voice clearly. Though some background noise is sometimes inevitable, avoid recording in areas that are naturally loud, like busy cafes and main streets. 

On top of these tips, you’re encouraged to think about your answers before starting your video to make the best use of your limited time, to be genuine, and to show your excitement!

Technical Considerations for Brown Interview

Prepare your video for Brown University by using a stable device and ensuring clear sound and lighting. Though your Brown video won’t be judged on its production quality, it’s still important to keep these technical considerations in mind. Let’s take a closer look at each of them. 

  • Device Choice: Use a computer, laptop, phone, or camera that can record in landscape orientation. This format works best for the submission platform.
  • Stable Setup: Prop up your device instead of holding it to prevent shaky footage. Find a stable surface or use a tripod to keep your device steady.
  • Sound Quality: Record in a quiet space to ensure clear audio. If possible, use an external microphone for better sound.
  • Lighting: Make sure you're well-lit to avoid shadows on your face. Natural light or additional lighting sources can help illuminate you evenly.
  • Submission Process: Upload your video through the Brown Applicant Portal once you receive access. Follow the submission instructions provided.
  • Preview and Verification: Before finalizing, use the preview feature to check your video for any issues. Make sure it meets the specified requirements.

By addressing these technical aspects, you'll be well-prepared to create and submit your video introduction for Brown University without any hiccups.

Brown University Video Interview FAQs 

Now that we’ve gone over the essentials, we will now address some frequently asked questions about the Brown video introduction. To learn more about how to get into Brown, take a look at our end-to-end college guide.

1. Do I Need an Interview For Brown?

The Brown video interview is not a mandatory part of the application process. However, it can help the admissions committee put a face to your name and learn more about you!

2. Does Brown Do Interviews in 2024?

Brown has transitioned from conducting alumni interviews to a new approach where students can submit video interviews. This shift applies to all upcoming admissions cycles.

3. Do All Brown Applicants Get Interviews?

All Brown applicants can submit video interviews.

Final Thoughts 

Seize this opportunity to leave a lasting impression on the admissions committee. While they’ll know who you are on paper, you can use your video introduction to demonstrate your excellence beyond your application!

With this guide in mind, you’ll be able to approach this optional component of your application with more confidence and a better understanding of what the admissions team is looking for. Best of Luck!

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