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Case Study 3 Induction - University of Gloucestershire

Page history last edited by Martin Jenkins 14 years, 7 months ago


Case Study 3: Student Induction


(taken from Gravestock, P. & Jenkins, M. (2009) Digital storytelling and its pedagogical impact, in Mayes, T. (ed.) Transforming Higher Education through Technology-enhanced Learning.)


The Faculty of Education, Humanities and Science runs a week-long student induction programme centred on an academic activity.  This programme uses academic activities as a means of socialising students into the University and to introduce them to the University’s academic philosophy, which is centred on active engagement.



Students work in small groups to complete the full cycle of an academic activity and are provided with an ‘inquiry’ which they have to investigate and synthesise, before presenting their findings and receiving feedback from academic staff and peers.  A number of disciplines within the faculty have used digital storytelling as the means for students to present their findings from the inquiry.  One such activity was the ‘Voices from the Flood’ project.



In July 2007 Gloucestershire experienced severe flooding which had a major impact on the local region.  On their arrival in September 2007, 80 students in the criminology, sociology and community development disciplines were engaged in the ‘Voices from the Flood’ project during their induction.  Acting as social researchers they were to investigate the impact of the floods on local communities in Gloucester, Tewkesbury and Winchcombe.  Working under the guidance of academic staff the students were able to choose the particular focus for their group inquiry; for example, impact on communities, housing or crime.



Students were introduced to the activity at a briefing session on their second day at the University.  At the same time they were given an introduction to digital storytelling, being shown examples and introduced to the relevant equipment and software.  Following the briefing the students had time to prepare their approach, the questions they wished to ask locals, and to conduct initial background research.  The next day they were transported to the local communities where they interviewed local people and took photographs of the still-visible flood damage.  On the third day, with other induction activities such as discipline and personal tutor meetings happening around this, the students had time to put together their digital story; staff were on hand to support this activity.  On the final day of the activity the digital stories were shown to the group as a whole.  This provided students with an opportunity to view each other’s work and provide feedback and comment.

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