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ENGLISH 356:  Digital Storytelling — May 2016

Online course with Prof. Beth Trembley

Digital storytelling: to take the traditional art and craft of telling stories and merge it with diverse digital media.

It creates opportunities for people with stories to tell (you!) to engage many kinds of audiences all over the globe by reconsidering how narratives and essays are constructed and communicated.

The need to write effectively for the digital realm crosses disciplines. This class focuses on creative nonfiction through memoir, personal essay, portraits and literary journalism. It is not only for creative writers, but also for educators, community organizers, scientists, ministers, journalists, politicians, non-profit managers, marketers, fundraisers and anyone hoping to bring writing to life in digital media. Learning how to write with images, energy, tension and pattern — and then how to convey that writing through the medium of digital storytelling — broadens anyone’s valuable skill set.

We will explore many forms of digital storytelling, from among such things as curation, snapshot stories, audio documentary, narrated short films, mapping, digital timelines and blogging. Digital storytelling presents dynamic challenges for anyone, and this course provides an opportunity to critically examine how digital narrative is constructed, including how narrators position themselves and their audiences.

This class is workshop-based, centered on our reading and writing of digital stories and scholarship about digital storytelling. Together we will participate in workshops and Story Circles, through which students will share their works in progress. Each student will create a portfolio of digital stories. All digital stories will be published to members of the course. Students will curate a final, public exhibition of the work produced in the class.

Because digital storytelling is important for everyone to learn, we will use no specialized equipment. All students need is a fairly recent laptop, software for editing audio, photos and video (all of which can be gotten for free), and a digital camera for capturing both still and video images (a fairly recent cell phone will do). Students will also be required to purchase an account with WeVideo (under $20). They will also establish a blog (free) which, for the duration of the course, must be shared with everyone in the course (it need not be public).

During the online May Term, technical support will not be available from the College—part of the learning experience will include innovative problem-solving in collaboration with your course colleagues.

This course fulfills the FA2 requirement. There is NO PREREQUISITE. Four Credit Hours.