Everyone has a story to tell. Perhaps you are an undergraduate student living the latest exciting chapter of your life at Northeastern University. Maybe you are a professor glimpsing how your research and teaching can alter the course of a student’s life. Or, possibly you are a graduate student discovering what it means to delve deeply into your field of study. Whatever your place in the university community, you most likely have a rich story to tell.
To create a digital story, you’ll write a script, then add narration, images, video and a soundtrack. Once you move your story to the web, others can see and hear your experience and learn from your perspective.
Make Your Own – Faculty may want to produce their own digital stories for teaching portfolios, tenure dossiers or research funding. Some faculty have produced digital stories to convey best practices in teaching, while others have used this persuasive medium to convince granting organizations to support their projects.
Assign Your Students – Faculty recognize that producing digital stories requires students to hone their writing, critical analysis, and multimedia skills. Drafting, editing and producing a powerful digital story will provide students a portfolio piece that may give them an edge when applying to graduate schools or seeking post-graduate employment. The Digtial Media Design Studio (DMDS) provides workshops and support services for students working on digital media projects.
Educational Uses for Digital Stories
- Course Assignments – A digital story can be an effective assignment in nearly any course in nearly any discipline that requires a major project or presentation. Examples:
- Real world online case scenarios – The cases, guiding students through patient assessment and treatment, require students to actively think about the practical relevance of the basic sciences and apply them to the real world situation. Each student is assigned to work through a case and has the opportunity to see what other students are working through and how knowledge of basic sciences are applied to solve other real world problems.
- Last year faculty and students from Tulane University produced stories about the aftermath of Katrina and its effect on their lives.
- Fourth year Pharmacy students in the Therapeutics with Self-Care Emphasis course at Northeastern created public service announcement videos about the abuse of over-the-counter drugs and common household products.
- Northeastern students in a first-year writing course created a “Multimedia Memoir”. The assignment focused on memory in art and writing and used various types of memoir — traditional, experimental, and graphic—as anchor readings.
- Learning Object – One professor developed a digital story called The Look in which he explained the concept of Science Fiction; another developed one to teach the themes and symbolism in All Quiet on the Western Front.
- Teaching Portfolio – A digital story uses multimedia to bring alive faculty’s best practices in teaching.
- Research Projects – Digital stories can convey complex concepts in an accessible manner. Grant-funded projects with websites that feature digital stories about the research can attract additional funding, student participants, other members of the research community, etc.
- Undergraduate Research – Students involved in undergraduate research can develop digital stories to reflect on their research experience and/or present key findings.
- Student Reflection – Students can develop stories to recount their experiences collaborating with peers and developing projects during their studies, or ponder their future as they get ready to graduate.
- Course Project – Currently, students studying journalism and biology are working with their professors to develop various types of digital stories.
- Portfolio Piece – Students develop a presentation in this dynamic medium to show potential employers or to submit with a graduate school application.
- Co-op, Study Abroad or Experiential Education Reflection – Students can complete digital stories as a required assignment for experiential education programs. The stories can serve as a portfolio piece for the students and a marketing piece for these programs to attract students.
Also of Interest:
Demonstrations and Events:
Educational Uses of Digital Story Telling/
“Digital Storytelling is the practice of using computer-based tools to tell stories. As with traditional storytelling, most digital stories focus on a specific topic and contain a particular…
The basics of storytelling as told by Ira Glass of “This American Life”.