Course Description

Sing in me, Muse, and through me tell the story of that man skilled in all ways of contending, the wanderer, harried for years on end, after he plundered the stronghold on the proud height of Troy.
~Homer: The Odyssey

Every day, we are bombarded by stories: in books, on the news, in music, on websites, in stores, while visiting museums, etc. So pervasive are stories that we often become desensitized to them. Yet, stories are carefully constructed to communicate messages that rely on particular goals and are expressed in specific forms. “Digital Storytelling” explores narratives as they are designed, produced, and consumed in digital forms. What are the elements of a story? How do digital spaces function similarly/differently from non-digital spaces when looking at narrative? How does the platform a story is produced on or in open and close the way you understand it? What are the tools you can use to write and visualize narrative in digital form? And finally, what does it mean to “tell stories” when digital forms and technologies are constantly changing? Students will have the opportunity to explore digital technologies, create and produce narratives, and analyze stories in digital forms. Games, digital exhibits/digital history, websites, and digital mapping will all be explored and will serve as the primary areas of inquiry for this project-driven course. As part of the class you will develop a proposal for your capstone project.

Learning Objectives

Over the course of the semester students will work to meet the following learning objectives. Students will:

  • Contextualize contemporary digital media with other forms of storytelling traditions (oral, print, manuscript, film, television) and be able to identify how different mediums affect how we construct the narratives that define us
  • Gain an understanding of the cultural significance of storytelling and the need for empowering a wide range of narrative voices–to, as Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie puts it, avoid “the dangers of a single story”
  • Learn the history of electronic literature and the various forms digital storytelling has taken over the last several decades
  • Gain technical skills in a range of digital storytelling methods
  • Learn how to work collaboratively to design and complete a digital project
  • Prepare for the DCC 209 capstone course by writing their capstone project proposal

Required Texts

The Martian by Andy Weir (physical copy,  not the eBook)

The Martian: Bring Him Home (iPhone and Android app) by Little Labs, Inc
The Stanley Parable (requires Steam account)

Additional readings provided via ELMS or direct link