The Skull of Mary Ann Higgins, © Herbert Art Gallery & Museum
The Skull of Mary Ann Higgins, © Herbert Art Gallery & Museum

The Senior Curator at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum has asked your team to create and produce a Webcast feature to go on the Herbert’s website. You will research two topics, the story of Mary Ann Higgins who was publicly executed in Coventry in 1831 and a famous letter from Queen Elizabeth I in 1569 to the Mayor of Coventry concerning her captive Mary Queen of Scots.


This Web Quest is designed for volunteers, trainees and students who work or volunteer in a heritage organisation to develop basic knowledge and skills in researching a topic or topics, develop team working and communications and  develop video and editing skills.  The transferable knowledge and skills learned by completing this web quest will allow you to create videos which could be used as a webcast on a website to promote the heritage site or organisation where you volunteer or train.




Author: Robert Nolan, Herbert Media, Culture Coventry, Coventry, UK. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Painting of hanging.  Public Domain
Painting of hanging. Public Domain

This task is in three parts:

Firstly you need to assign team roles for your group. You will need researchers to research the topics of Mary Ann Higgins and the Elizabeth I letter to the Lord Mayor of Coventry. Also, assign roles for learning and teaching others in your group in how to use the software required (Windows Movie Maker) to make the webcast.

Secondly as a team you will prepare how you will present your findings for the webcast (see Process section for suggested format).

Finally you will record your webcast and edit the footage in Windows Movie Maker or equivalent video editing software and present to the whole group.

You are not required to upload your finished Webcast to the Web. (Video of Webcast)


Step 1: 

  • Assign roles to the team for Team Lead, this person will be responsible for acquiring the hardware (camera and audio recording equipment) and software (Movie Maker or similar). They are also responsible for keeping the project on track.
  • Assign roles to research the topics and preparing what you are going to say in your Webcast.
  • Assign roles for using the Movie Maker software to edit the final footage and audio.

Step 2:

Mary Ann Higgins presents an ethical dilemma for the Museum, should the Museum keep her skull at the Herbert, display it to the public or have her buried. After your team completes researching this dilemma, have a discussion with your group see if you can find an answer to this question. You may want to mention Mary Ball as she was the last women publicly executed in Coventry in 1849. Use the links below for your research. 

Mary Ann Higgins

Mary Ball

Elizabeth Letter

Elizabeth I Letter is one of the oldest documents in the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum’s Archive. This was sent to the Mayor of Coventry with instructions in how her captive Mary Queen of Scots was...

" see hir safely kept and garded untyll our pleasure shall be other wyse to determine..."

...during her stay in Coventry. You may need to tell the story of the Northern Rebellion of 1569. Use the links below for your research.

The Northern Rebellion 1569 -70

Step 3:

Download the software if required. (If you are using an Apple Mac then you should have a copy of IMovie installed.)

  1. You may need to download and install this free software if it is not installed on your Windows system. Download from here.

  2. Learn to use Windows Movie Maker. Use the links and videos in the Resources section.

Step 4:

Now you have researched your topics and learned to use Windows Movie Maker you need to record and edit your webcast ready for uploading. You can do this in any way you like but your webcast should have a logical structure with a start, middle and end like all stories.

Suggested format:

Process Make a Webcast

This structure can define how you shoot your video with three different takes of presenter 1, and one each of presenters 2 & 3.

Assessment will be based on whether you have finished the task, how well did your team work together and what skills you have developed along with your knowledge and understanding of WebQuests, Windows Movie Maker and video editing.


Learning Outcomes

  • Team Work - Understand how roles and responsibilities can be allocated within a team.
  • Understand how to contribute to a team discussion.
  • Understand how to participate in a team activity.
  • Be able to review own contribution to the team.
  • Improving own learning and performance.
  • Research - Develop an understanding of the UK’s judicial system in the 1800s from simple research
  • Develop an understanding of how English was written in the 1500s from simple research.
  • Video Editing - Be able to use video hardware and software to capture sequences.
  • Be able to use video software tools and techniques to combine and edit sequences
  • Be able to play and present video sequences.
  • Webcast/Podcast - Understand how to Plan, Design and Create a Webcast/Podcast for uploading to the Internet

Knowledge acquired

  • Understand the concepts and design of Web Quest.
  • Develop an understanding of the UK judicial system in the 1800s and how English was written in the 1500s.
  • Understand the basic concepts of linear film editing.
  • Understand the concepts of working in a team.

Skills acquired

  • Developing higher cognitive thinking skills as in synthesis, analysis and evaluation (Bloom’s Taxonomy)
  • Using the Internet to develop research skills
  • Develop confidence to present in front of peers and a recording device
  • Develop skills to design, create and edit a webcast.
  • Developing team work and communication skills.

Competences acquired

  • Responsibility and autonomy to be able to work in a team and as an individual to complete the task
  • Research, analyse, evaluate and present findings from simple research.
  • Use a template to replace current topics to more relevant topics associated with their heritage site.
  • Be competent to develop own webcast and/or webquest.
  • To create and edit their own videos
  • Work in a team to complete assigned tasks.


You now have the basic skills and knowledge to record and edit a video to make a Webcast.  This knowledge and skills will be valuable to the heritage site or organisation where you volunteer or are in training. 

You next challenge is find a topic or object from the collections where you are training or volunteering to create your next video to promote you heritage site or organisation


Well done