Monday, March 7
8:30 AM-12:00 PM
Tulip Grove E

Digital Storytelling: From Traditional Software Applications to Emerging New Media Tools

Workshop ID: 31954
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    Bernard Robin
    University of Houston
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    Sara McNeil
    University of Houston

Abstract: The goal of this workshop is to introduce educators to Digital Storytelling and explore how it can be used as an effective teaching and learning tool for their students. Digital Story examples will be shown and design and development models will be shared and discussed. Participants will then work with images, audio/background music, and write the script for a Digital Story. Participants will create their story using Microsoft Photo Story 3 software, a free program available for participants to load on their computers. Participants will record audio narration and develop transitions and movement for their digital stories and learn to save their work for playback on a PC, disc, and on the Web. The workshop will conclude with participants sharing their Digital Stories and discussing next steps and strategies for using Digital Stories in the classroom. After the conference, participants will have access to online resources and tutorials.


Workshop participants will: • Learn about the different types of Digital Stories that can be created by students and instructors; • Examine the most common elements of Digital Storytelling; • Acquire hands-on experience using computer-based software to design and create their own Digital Stories; • Gain theoretical knowledge about how Digital Storytelling can be used to promote students’ research and writing skills as well as other 21st century skills; • Discuss how Digital Storytelling can be used in multiple subject areas and grade levels; • Learn to evaluate students’ work in Digital Storytelling; and • Investigate the most important considerations for educators who want to begin integrating Digital Storytelling in their instruction.

Topical Outline

TOPICAL OUTLINE Workshop participants will gain hands-on experience in the following areas: • Working with digital content including text, still images, audio and music files • Using an instructional design model specifically for Digital Storytelling • Writing and revising a Digital Story script • Using storyboards to organize content and visualize how a Digital Story will come to life • Using the free Microsoft Photo Story 3 application to create a Digital Story • Recording and editing audio narration for the Digital Story • Saving Digital Stories for playback on a PC, on a CD or a DVD, and uploadable to the web In addition, participants will examine other important issues, including: • Other software options for creating Digital Stories, including free Web 2.0 resources available for PC and Macintosh computer users • A strategy for evaluating Digital Stories created by students • How current copyright and educational fair use guidelines affect students and educators involved in Digital Storytelling Participants will receive examples of Digital Stories on a CD as well as access to online tutorials and resources.


The workshop is appropriate for higher education faculty, graduate students and K-12 teachers in all content areas and at all grade levels. Experience using the web to find and save images and music, working with computer files and folders, and a basic understanding of organizing, creating, and evaluating curricular materials for classroom use is expected. Participation in both the morning and afternoon sessions is expected since material covered in the afternoon session will be based on activities completed in the morning session. REQUIREMENTS Workshop participants must bring their own PC laptop or Tablet computer that complies with the following: 1. The computer must be running any version of the Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7 Operating System 2. The computer must have at least an Intel P3 700-megahertz or equivalent processor 3. The computer must have at least 256 MB of RAM and a minimum of 400 MB of available hard-disk space 4. The computer must have a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive capable of reading CDs 5. The computer must have a sound card with a microphone input plus speakers or a headphone jack

Experience Level



Bernard Robin is an Associate Professor in the Instructional Technology Program in the University of Houston's College of Education. He teaches courses on the integration of technology into the curriculum, educational uses of multimedia and the design and development of community-based web sites. He has published numerous articles on the educational uses of emerging technologies and the professional development of teachers. He frequently works with K-12 students and teachers, as well as other university educators to help them integrate technology into their teaching and is a co-author of the book, The Educator's Guide to the Web. He is the designer and administrator of the Educational Uses of Digital Storytelling website ( and serves as the co-chair of the Society for Technology and Teacher Education’s Special Interest Group on Digital Video and Digital Storytelling. Throughout his academic career, Dr. Robin has made presentations at local, regional, national and international conferences and has conducted educational technology workshops in the US, Canada, Europe and Asia. Sara McNeil is an Associate Professor and Program Director in the Instructional Technology Program in the University of Houston's College of Education. She teaches courses in instructional design, the visual representation of information, and the collaborative development of multimedia educational software. She is the designer of the Digital History website ( and is a co-PI on four U.S. Department of Education Teaching American History grants as well as a National Endowment for the Humanities Materials Development grant. She has received two University of Houston Teaching Excellence Awards as well as a national award for an Outstanding Faculty Member in a Distance Education Program. She currently serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Technology and Teacher Education, the Journal of Engineering Systems Simulators, and the International Journal on E-Learning. She served as SITE’s vice-president for the New Possibilities with IT Committee for over a decade.
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