Digital Storytelling Course Outline

Course Description

Session 1
Topic: Overview of Digital Storytelling Trends

  • Instructor introduction.
  • Student introductions, conversation about their interest/focus in digital storytelling.
  • Describe yourself in 7 words exercise.
  • Course overview — review syllabus and discuss class goals.
  • “Six Word Memoir” exercise.
  • Trends in storytelling with focus on digital products, platforms, ecosystems, tools, and new business models.
  • Showcase of models of digital storytelling — features that grabbed people’s attention and got them talking/sharing.

Session 2
Topic: Personal Platforms

  • Personal digital platforms, including website and social media.
  • Case studies of individuals leveraging their personal digital platforms to convey stories.
  • Exercise: showcase a planned or in-progress digital story though a single photograph and a one paragraph summary.
  • Strategies to leverage personal digital platforms to experiment with digital storytelling.

Session 3
Topic: Accessible Platforms — An overview of platforms and ecosystems that allow you to create, showcase, and share digital stories.

  • Social Media (Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, Medium, Facebook, Tumblr)
  • Websites / Blogs (Squarespace, WordPress, Tumblr)
  • Atavist
  •, SoundCloud
  • Podcasts (iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, Overcast, etc.)
  • Teachable (online courses)
  • YouTube
  • Wattpad
  • Hooked App

Session 4
Topic: Social Media Storytelling Deep Dive

  • Guest speaker, TBD by class interests.
  • The continuing power of the hashtag.
  • Facebook Live, Instagram Stories, Twitter Storytelling.
  • Digital asset strategy, keeping in mind that each social platform has its own communicative nuance.
  • Leveraging social media to foster sharing, submissions, conversation, and collaboration.
  • Case Study: #The100DayProject

Session 5
Topic: New paradigms, new business models, emerging trends in how producers, publishers, and marketers are approaching and leveraging digital storytelling to present information, launch products, and build businesses.

  • Native advertising overview.
  • Case study: Gumroad’s Small Product Lab.
  • Product rollout case studies focusing on feature films and television shows.
  • Final projects from class — focusing on a single project, students will showcase a digital story.

Session 6
Topic: Next Steps — Steps to Take and Actionable Items as the Class Comes to a Close

  • Final projects from class (continued) — focusing on a single project, students will showcase a digital story.
  • Job search / professional advice and insights with regard to digital storytelling.
  • Actionable strategies for sharing and generating interest in your digital storytelling efforts.

Syllabus is subject to change due to current events, guest speaker schedule changes and/or interests of students.