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Create a digital storytelling assignment

Digital storytelling combines video, images, music, and spoken word to tell a story in a short video. This technique allows students to use and learn about video editing tools while also expressing themselves creatively and engaging with the subject of their film. By stepping through the process of coming up with a topic, collecting their resources, storyboarding the video, and creating a script, students are exercising many of the same skills involved in writing a paper, as well as developing their visual literacy skills. 

Be sure to distribute a rubric (PDF) to establish the criteria of a successful digital storytelling assignment.

When asking students to create digital stories, have them keep in mind that:

  • digital stories are brief - usually no more than 10 minutes in length. Estimate about 1 hour editing per minute of footage.
  • students should take advantage of the variety of media available- music, video, pictures, drawings, text, spoken word, etc.
  • students should use the same critical revision skills as they would when editing a paper; in other words, they must make sure that their final projects are coherent, concise, clear, relevant and thoughtful. To ensure quality results, students should submit a script, storyboard, or other detailed outline of their video before final submission.

Popular Digital Storytelling software

On Campus Resources

Academic Technology, 0128 Holzapfel Hall

  • 74 Flip UltraHD Camcorders
  • 4 work stations with relevant software (iMovie, Camtasia, Final Cut Express, Photoshop, etc.)
  • Scanners
  • VCR/DVD converter
  • USB Turntable/Vinyl Archiver
  • USB Cassette Archiver
  • Available for faculty use

OIT Computer Labs - search by software to find a workstation with the program you wish to use (e.g. iMovie, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, Photoshop, etc.)

Nonprint Media Services, 0300 Hornbake Library

  • 4 digital media workstations including hardware/software to digitize VHS, software such as Adobe Creative Suite, iMovie, etc.
  • Available to students and faculty

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