Digital storytelling can be many things . . . narrative entertainment presented via digital media . . . interactive . . . a powerful teaching tool . . . nonlinear . . . immersive . . . a new art form incorporating one of the oldest forms of entertainment. . . ordinary people telling their own stories their own way . . . and an emerging field of scholarly research. This class will investigate a range of questions through exploration, research, and collaboration: What is digital storytelling? How does it differ from other kinds of storytelling? What happens when we tell a story digitally? How does digital storytelling work in the classroom? Does it change learning? The course is designed for those who are interested in learning and teaching about digital storytelling, combining reading, writing, and hands-on learning. Students will have an opportunity to examine issues through the content, context, and lens appropriate for their discipline and learning goals.

Contact Information:
Dr. Kelly Schrum
Office:  Research I, Rm 454
Phone:  703-993-4521
Office Hrs:  Thursdays 4:00 – 6:00 and by appointment
Email:  kschrum@gmu.edu

The requirements for the course are as follows:

  • Blog postings (20%);
  • Short projects (15%);
  • Script, Storyboard, and Rough Cut (15%);
  • Final Project (35%);
  • Participation, including discussion facilitation (15%); and
  • self-evaluation (required, not graded).

Blog postings are due by midnight Tuesday. You are required to read and respond to blog postings by two colleagues each time a blog posting is due. Responses are due by the start of class on Thursday evening.

Final Project
The final project for this course is a 7- to 10-minute digital story. If you are registered for HIST 615 008, your project must incorporate primary sources and an original argument about a historical topic. If you are registered for CTCH 792 003, your project must focus on teaching and learning or a topic closely related to your area of research. See below for deadlines; topic must be approved by instructor.

Many of the articles, interviews, and digital stories explored in this class are available online (see schedule for full listing). These books are available for purchase at the Mason bookstore or online via Amazon or other booksellers.

  • Henry Jenkins, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide
  • Janet Murray, Hamlet on the Holodeck
  • Jason Ohler, Digital Storytelling in the Classroom: New Media Pathways to Literacy, Learning, and Creativity
  • Simon Schama, Dead Certainties

Academic Integrity
GMU is an Honor Code university; please see the University Catalog for a full description of the code and the honor committee process. The principle of academic integrity is taken very seriously and violations are treated gravely. What does academic integrity mean in this course? Essentially this: when you are responsible for a task, you will perform that task. When you rely on someone else’s work in an aspect of the performance of that task, you will give full credit in the proper, accepted form. Another aspect of academic integrity is the free play of ideas. Vigorous discussion and debate are encouraged in this course, with the firm expectation that all aspects of the class will be conducted with civility and respect for differing ideas, perspectives, and traditions. When in doubt, please ask for guidance and clarification.

Mason Email Account
Students must activate their Mason email accounts to receive important University information, including messages related to this class.

Office of Disability Services
If you are a student with a disability and you need academic accommodations, please see me and contact the Office of Disability Services (ODS) at 703-993-2474. All academic accommodations must be arranged through the ODS.

Other Useful Campus Resources:
Writing Center, A114 Robinson Hall; (703) 993-1200.
University Libraries, Ask a Librarian
Counseling and Psychological Services, (703) 993-2380

University Policies
The University Catalog is the central resource for university policies affecting student, faculty, and staff conduct in university affairs.