Week 3: Case Studies

“Creativity is putting your imagination to work, and it's produced the most extraordinary results in human culture”
-- Sir Ken Robinson

Instructor's Notes

Last week's article oriented us toward the fake-news element of digital storytelling and the broad mediascape of modern life; emphasizing the urgent need for critical media-literacy.  Among the themes that many of you noted in hypothes.is is that of culture. Stories beget culture.  Stories are what we use to shape our tribes, be they families, churches, political parties, schools, countries, or clubs.  We swap stories that reinforce our values and beliefs as we congregate around the people, ideas, and tales that resonate most.

Stories are how culture, communities, and people function.

Last week's article ALSO provided a wide illustration of digital storytelling concepts and ideas; from which we began identifying potential future-topics for our course.  From our article discussion, you nominated:

  • Generation Z Culture
  • Case Studies - Practical Examples of Digital Storytelling
  • Critical Media Literacy
  • Transmedia Storytelling
  • Empathy Building
  • Persuasion & Propaganda
  • Digital Identity & Social Media
  • Reality Distortion
  • Mediascape
  • Immersive Storytelling (VR)
  • Social Media Influencers
  • Consumer/Storyteller Motives

To expand our understanding of modern digital storytelling we are going to focus this week on some actual digital stories and genres. As you explore, I invite you to continue nominating topic-ideas for future study (post to Slack #week-03) - we will be discussing, voting and deciding on topics soon.  And next week we will dive deeper into the culture machine of the mediascape.  Fun, right?

My small experiment this week was figuring out how to build tabs into a StoryLab page.  It's a teeny-tiny experiment, but I had to experiment with code (my media) to figure it out.  Mission accomplished (below).

This Week's Tasks
  1. Finish-up any bits from last week. Digital Story (1) needs to be published to StoryLab by Wednesday.

  2. There are three genres and nine stories linked in the tabs below. Identify ONE story that has a signifcant affect / effect on you. Identify ANOTHER story that inspires your own work, i.e. a format you could adapt or remix for your own teachings.

  3. Actually do the step above, as we will be discussing and sharing - more to come in the Weekly-Thing, posted to Slack on Wednesday.

  4. Self-organize and complete your first Dialogue. Dialogues are easy. They just take some organization and scheduling. Use #week-03 Slack channel to get organized. Let me know if you have problems with scheduling or grouping - I can help.

    Have Dialogues posted by the end of the week. Discussion topics are yours to choose, but must relate to our study of digital stories and learning. Some ideas... any of the digital stories from the tabs below or any of the topic-ideas that have been nominated for future-study.

  5. Once you've done all you plan to do for the week, complete the Check-In for Week 3 to claim your points.

Digital Story Sampler

Participatory storytelling invites people to actively contribute and collaborate in telling the story, producing media ancillaries for the story, and actively engaging with one another.


is an open, online class telling stories about humans being. down the rabbit hole >>

World Without Oil

is an alternate reality game with 1000s of players telling a single story. away we go >>

Sherlock Holmes & the IOT

is a blend of meetups, digital, discovery, past, present, and future. once upon a time >>

Data visualization is an emerging art form that takes big, dry data-sets and converts them into visually rich interactives that give data the necessary style, media, tone, cadence and context to make them engaging.

A brief history

is a visual essay about US history based on 100 years of newspaper meta-data. a long time ago in a galaxy far far away >>


is a playful story about combatting college debt. once upon a time >>

The Next America

is a longform story about changing US demographics. it was the best of times, it was the worst of times >>

Playful stories engage learners with choice in the narrative; allowing them to branch into different possibilities, perspectives, and potential outcomes of a scenario.

That Moment When

is a humorous branching video told in choose-your-own-adventure fashion. Adult humor/language. there once was lonely orphan >>


is a role-playing game centered on real-world hardships in America. in a distant land >>

Finding the Truth

is a game in which you play judge and jury in the criminal justice system. in the beginning >>
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About Brad Hinson

Teller of stories; drinker of coffee; father of kids; tinkerer of tools; geek. I am an SEHD Assistant Dean, an LDT Instructor, and a ThinqStudio Director @ CU Denver.
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