Digital Storytelling at ACU
Media training and support in the Learning Studio is grounded in a commitment to storytelling. We see learning to edit audio or video as developing a new type of digital literacy, allowing students and faculty to share the messages that matter to them with a global audience.
This semester Al Haley and Kyle Dickson taught Introduction to Film for the first time and students were asked to produce a major project that demonstrated their mastery of core concepts of the course. Learning Studio staff spent several class days introducing students to camera movement, audio, and editing before they produced their projects in Camtasia and Adobe Premiere Pro.
Here are a few of the final projects.
- Film Analysis Digital Essay – Working individually or with a partner, produce a short 3-5 minute analysis of a film from our semester that accounts for the technical aspects of its production within the context of the director’s work or genre. Your digital essay seeks to highlight an informed point of view with carefully chosen stills/clips from your film(s) synced to your audio commentary. (For examples of this type of video essay, see Tony Zhou’s Every Frame a Painting).
- Short Narrative Film – Working individually or with a partner, write, direct, and produce a short film, following ACU FilmFest guidelines, that builds on your working knowledge of story structure, character development, and genre this semester. The short film should demonstrate mastery of the fundamentals of camera movement, shot composition, lighting, audio, and editing, all of which we’ll introduce in workshops in the Learning Studio this semester. (For inspiration, see past projects on the FilmFest Archive).
For several years students in Dr. Kyle Dickson’s Eighteenth-Century British Literature have produced research projects as a way to share key texts from the Enlightenment with a broader audience. It’s easy to complete academic research for an audience of one–the professor–so this assignment has attempted to ask students to communicate research from an upper-level course to general audience.
Jonathan Swift and Ireland – Victoria Stowe
Enjoyed working with Dr. Jeff Childers and Jacque Morrison and students in the Oxford Study Abroad program to shape digital stories that reflect on their international experiences this semester. Students were asked to produce projects that reflected on how experiences, people, or places they encountered this semester changed the way they looked at themselves, making them feel like an outsider or tied to a new community.
Really pleased with the work these students produced alongside their other work and to the collaborations with on-site faculty. A great few days.
Enjoyed working with a great group of faculty producing digital stories that share their teaching philosophies. Thanks to Cheryl Bacon for proposing the prompt and working with Al Haley and Kyle Dickson in the Learning Studio to lead a great workshop.
Thanks to the participants for sharing their work.
- Cliff Barbarick – Why I Teach
- Jessica Smith – My Grandmother’s Rings
- Debbie Williams – Teaching Unveiled
- Lorraine Wilson – Why I Teach
May 13-15, beginning at 9:00am each day
To RSVP for the workshop:http://go.acu.edu/gearx
The week after finals, the Learning Studio will be hosting a 3-day digital storytelling workshop that provides faculty a chance to learn about media creation and work with colleagues and media specialists to develop an original digital story.
This workshop is perfect for anyone wanting to share their teaching vision in an upcoming teaching portfolio or considering a media project in a course in the fall. This May we’ll tell stories around “Why I Teach.”
Our lives have been shaped by great teachers. So much of the way we look at the world as parents, as men and women of faith, and as teachers ourselves is the product of those who modeled a unique vision for us. As we talk to our students and colleagues about who we are as teachers today, an important first step is learning to share our story.
This spring we were honored to work with Dr. Laura Carroll, associate professor of English, as our Faculty Media Fellow.
Dr. Carroll spent the fall semester in Oxford, England, as part of her second semester with the ACU Study Abroad program. While there, she also had an opportunity to continue work in a research area looking at the rhetoric of monuments and memorials, specifically focused on the remembrance of the Holocaust.
After returning to Abilene, she spent the spring semester working with Learning Studio staff and graduate media fellow Erin Daugherty on a scholarly storytelling project to share the implications of her research with new audiences.
Special thanks to Laura and Erin and to Mathew Bardwell in the Learning Studio for their contributions to this first faculty fellows project.