Digital Story

For this project, you will craft a two-five minute digital story which blends images, words, and/or sounds to make a compelling argument about a topic of importance to you. You might choose to tell a story of your own life or a story about other people’s lives. You might tell a story about a particular place in Miami/Oxford (or another place that you have been). You might  craft a “public service announcement” which seeks to persuade (and educate) your audience about an issue important to you. Although the choice of topic is up to you, you must make sure that you have a well-defined audience and rhetorical purpose (a clear sense of who your audience is and how you want them to think, feel, and/or act differently after the see/hear your story).

Breaking down the layers:

Spoken Words: Your storymay contain scripted, voiceover narration. If you are writing a story about other people, you might also consider audiorecording and then editing interviews.

Still Images: Ideally, you will already have some digital photos that relate to your topic (or you will be able to go out and take some digital photos that fit your topic). If you have printed photos that relate to your topic, you can scan them at the CIM center (or at the book scanner on the main floor of the library). You also can find a wide variety of creative commons images that you can use at http://flickr.com/creativecommons (though you will need to give the photographers credit). I will ask that you not use any copyrighted images in your work. You must include citations of any images that you did not create in the credits of your movie!

Music or atmospheric sounds: You may want to add a musical soundtrack to heighten the emotional effect of your story (or to elucidate the structure of the story). You can find creative commons licensed music at http://freeplaymusic.com. I will ask that you not use copyrighted music in your digital stories. You also might choose to record atmospheric sounds (i.e. the sound of a crowd or a bird) if they could contribute to your story.

Alphabetic Text: You might wish to use words on a screen (title slides or pictures of text) in order to tell your story. Remember to think carefully about pacing and avoid using unnecessarily large blocks of text.

Video: You can incorporate video if you wish (though you are not required to do so).

BETA Version (50 pts): Due 1/28

For the beta version, you must turn in a fully functioning (at least two minute) digital story posted to youtube and embedded in your blog (or posted to the course blackboard site if you prefer not to use youtube). You also should turn in an alphabetic copy of the script for your narration (on your blog). Finally, you will write a reflection on your blog (at least 300 words) in which you address the following questions:

1) What was your rhetorical purpose in crafting this digital story?
2) Who did you imagine as your audience for this story and how are you adapting your work to them?
3) What kinds of feedback would you like from peers and instructor? What issues concern you?
4) What images did you employ and why? How did the images complement, extend, or complicate the spoken words?
5) Why did you time and sequence your images, sounds, and words in the way that you did?
6) What plans do you have for revising this text?

The beta version will be evaluated solely on the basis of the completeness of your story and the thoughtfulness/detail of your reflection. I will give you lots of feedback about ways to improve your story for the final version, but I will still give you full credit for making a complete draft (even if it still needs a lot of revision)

Release Version (100 pts): Due 2/9

For the final, you will turn in a substantially revised version of the beta. This text should reveal a careful attempt to respond meaningfully to the feedback you receive from your peers and the instructor. We will develop a “grading rubric” for the release version together as a class.

Final Reflective Memo: Due 2/10 (50 pts)

In addition to completing the final digital story, you will also write a reflective memo (at least 500 words) in which you address:

1) What was your rhetorical purpose in crafting this digital story?
2) Who did you imagine as your audience for this story and how did you adapt your work to them?
3) What revisions did you make in response to feedback from peers and the instructor?
4) What images did you employ and why? How did the images complement, extend, or complicate the spoken words?
5) Why did you time and sequence your images, sounds, and words in the way that you did?
6) What changes would you make to this story if you had more time?
7) What did you learn from the process of composing this story?
8. How was your process of composing this digital story different from or similar to your process of composing more conventional texts?

Note: You may incorporate language from the beta reflection into this final reflection; however, the primary goal of this reflection is to demonstrate how your project has been revised an improved since the last draft!

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