Scottish Independence Debate Videos

Posted by Speakeasy News > Wednesday 19 May 2021 > Webpicks

If you would like to explore the debate around a possible second Scottish independence referendum, IndyRef2, in class, these videos have some useful material.

We already featured a Scottish National Party Party Political broadcast from before the 6 May elections in our article. This one was published after the election results. Its message is pretty clear: there will be an independence referendum.

The following video is designed for British kids by the BBC's Newsround progamme. It's quite long, 8 minutes, and it does feature a variety of Scottish accents your pupils may not be familiar with. (No time like the present!)

The first two parts only have one voice to cope with, the presenter. To 1”40 gives a decent introduction to the question, explaining in what way Scotland is or isn't a separate country from the UK, and has some good images to set the scene. The next section (1”40-4”00) covers a few important dates.

That is followed by various Scottish people saying why they love the country, but that means dealing with a lot of different accents and is less directly about independence.

The last part, from 5"57 is a discussion between two teenagers on opposite sides of the independence divide, but it requires quite a lot of knowledge of the situation. Probably best for AMC students. Also useful with them is this explainer document from the Institute for Government. It's long, but very clear and pupils could be directed to certain sections.

There's a theme here: all of the videos that attempt to explain the issue are longer than you would usually choose for class use. That's because the topic is complex, and there are varied opinions to be presented.

This video from the Financial Times is no exception, it's about 7 minutes. It's all interesting and fairly clear from B1+, but you could focus on the section 3”27-4”54: the short interview with Professor Michael Keating, chair in Scottish politics at Aberdeen University, and summary of the impact of Brexit on support for independence.


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