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(Image by William Topa on Unsplash)

COURSE DESCRIPTION UAF’s ​Course Catalogue:​ ​ This course examines the principles of storytelling in general and digital storytelling in particular, paying close attention the use of digital storytelling to inform, persuade, and entertain across a variety of social and cultural institutions. Elements of digital storytelling will be investigated and used to create original digital stories in a variety of media. What this means for us: ​We will approach the subject of digital storytelling from the complex intersections of audience, storyteller, teacher, and learner. We will inhabit each of these roles and reflect individually and together on their impacts on us and each other. As digital storytelling exists at and expands the boundaries of storytelling, we will take boundaries/frontiers as a theme for this course. (Where) Is there a line between teacher and learner? When does it shift? What happens to storytelling when it goes digital? Where do we find ourselves, at these intersections? *prerequisites: ED-431 and ED-659, or permission of instructor.


We will author (individually + collaboratively) multiple digital stories using multiple digital tools We will synthesize theories of storytelling and education

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We will apply our learning to real-world contexts in our communities We will explore and practice the role of “audience” in the digital realm

INSTRUCTIONAL METHODS One of the exciting affordances of ​digital​ storytelling is opportunities for interaction. While this is a fully online course with no required synchronous meetings, it will be highly interactive, driven by your contributions and questioning. I will post content and questions to get us started and will act as a facilitator of our explorations together. This is also an open course, meaning that the class contents are available on the open internet. With the exception of our class discussions and any individual communication with the instructor, most of your submitted work will also be made on the open internet. You’ll be published! And we’ll talk about publishing-while-in-process as an aspect of (some) digital storytelling. 

INSTRUCTOR Kendell Newman Office Hours: scheduled at students’ request, virtual only Office Telephone: 617-968-7888 (this is my personal cell phone. Texts and calls are ok)  E-mail Address:

We Make the Road By Walking:Conversations on Education and Social Change ​(1990) by Myles Horton and Paulo Freire All other course materials will be available free online.

TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS FOR COURSE You’ll need regular access to a computer and the Internet to access our course materials. Our class discussions will happen in Slack, a free online tool, and we’ll maintain a presence on Twitter. Occasional communications will come through your email account -- please check it regularly or forward incoming mail to an account you use. ​You will be required to sign up for accounts and experiment with a number of additional digital tools. You need not master any of these tools; you must be willing to try things and examine where and how you encounter obstacles. You will need a mobile device that can connect to the internet (smartphone, tablet) and you (and your family/roommates) will probably appreciate a good pair of headphones -- digital stories have SOUND!

COURSE READINGS/MATERIALS The Poet X​ (2018) by Elizabeth Acevedo

“Once people find out they can survive outside the limits, they’re much happier [...] I  think we can urge people to push the boundaries as far as they can, and if they get in  trouble, fine.”  

- Myles Horton, ​We Make the Road By Walking

(Image by SpaceX on Unsplash)


% grade

Storytelling practicum x 4



Audience practicum x 4



Theory Synthesis/Reflection x 2



Community-Engaged Learning Project



I see this course as straddling two areas of interest: education and storytelling. The required work for the course reflects this valuing, with an emphasis on being an audience member and engaged participant. You’ll notice there is no separate grade for “participation” -- this is an assumption on my part that in a 600-level graduate class, I can assume engaged and collegial participation for anything that doesn’t fit neatly within the outlined assignments.

Feedback + Grading Criteria All assignments are pass/fail and feedback will identify opportunities for you to improve and push boundaries in successive assignments. I will share specific expectations for each assignment in the assignment itself.

Effort + Student Involvement   Expect to spend 8-10 hours/week on this course. This will include ~3 hours of reading (if you can call it that, for digital stories), ~3 hours of

Due Date

discussing/collaborating/giving feedback with our group, and ~3 hours of creating.

Late Work + Revision I accept both, so long as you talk to me about it.

Instructor Response Time I respond to emails and Slack messages within 24 hours. Feedback on your assignments may take up to a week.

Academic Integrity Your academic honesty is assumed, which means that I expect your submitted work to have come from your brain and your hand. Digital storytelling is highly referential, and we’ll work hard to identify and cite our references. See UAF’s student Code of Conduct for official policies around academic honesty and plagiarism.

TITLE IX PROTECTION University of Alaska Board of Regents have clearly stated in BOR Policy that discrimination, harassment and violence will not be tolerated on any campus of the University of Alaska If you believe you are experiencing discrimination or any form of harassment including sexual harassment/misconduct/assault, you are encouraged to report that behavior. If you report to a faculty member or any university employee, they must notify the UAF Title IX Coordinator about the basic facts of the incident. Your choices for reporting include: 1. You may access confidential counseling by contacting the UAF Health & Counseling Center at 474-7043; 2. You may access support and file a Title IX report by contacting the UAF Title IX Coordinator at 474-6600; 3. You may file a criminal complaint by contacting the University Police Department at 474-7721.

STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES This class expects you to support each other with regular discussion and feedback. But there’s more! UAF offers technical, writing, and research support, all of which may be useful to you this semester.

UAF eLearning Student Services   Student Services helps students with registration and course schedules, provides information about lessons and student records, assists with the examination process, and answers general questions. Our Academic Advisor can help students communicate with instructors, locate helpful resources, and maximize their distance learning experience. Contact the UAF eLearning Student Services staff at 907.455.2060 or toll free 1.800.277.8060 or contact staff directly – for directory listing see: ​

Office of Information Technology Help Desk Go to ​​ to see about current network outages and news. Reach the Help Desk at: ● e-mail ​ ● fax: 907.450.8312 ● phone: 450.8300 (in the Fairbanks area) or 1.800.478.8226 (outside of Fairbanks)

UAF Writing Center

The writing center​ offers writing tutoring to students,

staff, faculty and the wider community in any discipline, 6 days/ week. They also offer ​phone tutorials​.

CTC Learning Center

The Learning Center offers tutoring in writing and math. For hours of operation and information about ​online tutoring​ for writing, check ​their website.

UAF Library

The Rasmusen Library ​reference help desk ​is available to assist students with library research and other questions.

Disability Services The ​UAF Office of Disability Services​ operates in conjunction with UAF eLearning. Disability Services, a part of UAF's Center for Health and Counseling, provides academic accommodations to enrolled students who are identified as being eligible for these services. If you believe you are eligible, please visit their web site (​​) or contact a student affairs staff person at your local campus. You can also contact Disability Services on the Fairbanks campus by phone, 907.474.5655, or by e-mail (​   

(Image by Stephane Delval on Unsplash)

“She tells me words give people permission to be their fullest self and aren't these the poems I most needed to hear?” ―E ​ lizabeth Acevedo,​ The Poet X