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Case Study 4: Business Management

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


Case Study 4: Business Management



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



“I was looking for something that would be enabling ... to perhaps be more free thinking.”  (Module Leader.)



Concerned that final year students can potentially become strategic in their learning, the Module Leader for the BM303 ‘Managing Change’ module wanted students to both investigate change and also experience change for themselves.  This was done by introducing digital storytelling as one of the assessment points in this module.



Working in small groups the students, a cohort of 120, were asked to produce a digital story that emerged from their engagement with the theoretical aspects of the subject, and how they make sense of managing change in the current environment.  The expectation was a documentary-style story that captured the evolving contexts and knowledge that students would encounter.  It should be noted that this work coincided with the dramatic changes in the economic climate in late 2008.  The tutor encouraged the students to be creative and use more ‘dynamic’ media including video and music.  There was also no specification regarding the length of the final product, and most stories lasted 10-12 minutes.  The students were, in effect, being asked to replace a presentation with a creative, multimedia presentation.  Students captured extracts from media reports from the Internet, radio and television, which they used in conjunction with their own academic research and analysis to put together their ‘narrative’.  In addition to the digital story students also submitted a reflective essay which revealed how they had engaged with creating the story.



The tutor response, and feedback from colleagues, to the use of digital stories has been very positive.  The quality of the student work, in terms of analysis of their chosen topic as well as the creativity that it has encouraged, has been well received.  Analysis of the student reflections shows overall that the students responded very positively to this approach but some comments reveal some initial uncertainty.  The table below provides some of the students’ comments on the use of digital storytelling.



Initial reaction



Hard to come up with a concept that would work as a story

Used it to do a presentation in another of my modules

Biggest challenge

Really helped me to understand the complexity ...

Obscure form of assessment

I found it to be very exciting

Originally I was unsure ... non-academic

Engrossing method of study ... new skills

I did not know what was required ... normally ... academic paper

An opportunity to think outside the box

Beneficial novelty ... unnecessary worry

Created a level of interest and discussion that might not have been there otherwise

Daunting and unclear


Initial thoughts ... negative

Enjoy the process more and more ... would like to see more in modules



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