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Title: Towards the development of models for digital storytelling across the disciplines: Activating students’ social and cultural capital
Authors: Gachago, Daniela 
Ivala, Eunice 
Barnes, Veronica 
Gill, P 
Felix-Minnaar, J 
Issue Date: 28-Nov-2012
Publisher: HELTASA
Abstract: Digital storytelling is used in higher education to facilitate student engagement, reflection for deep learning, project-based learning, and the effective integration of technology into teaching. Although originating from digitally saturated contexts, the increasing access to mobile technologies has made digital storytelling viable in less resource-rich environments. However, limited research evidence exists to support the above claim. Aims: This paper reports on an ongoing project at a university of technology in South Africa aimed at developing context-specific models of integrating digital storytelling into teaching and learning across various disciplines and student levels of study. Methods: This study follows a mixed-methods research approach, combining student surveys, student focus groups and interviews with lecturers involved. Results: The paper will present: 1. detailed descriptions of the two models, 2. perceived impacts of digital storytelling on students’ learning, especially with regard to student engagement, reflection, collaboration, the acquisition of content and the development of digital literacies, and 3. perceived challenges in implementing digital storytelling across different disciplines. Preliminary findings of the study revealed the emergence of two models of digital storytelling: one based on a workshop model, emphasising collaborative sharing and the development of individual personal narratives; and a more independent, student-led model, whereby groups of students develop instructional, content-based digital stories. Conclusion: Against the background of Bourdieu’s concept of social reproduction, this paper argues that every student possesses social and cultural capital, albeit diverse ones. Digital storytelling has the potential to activate students’ social and cultural capital, such as their digital literacy practices or lived experiences providing the background for rich narratives. However, for this activation to happen, a careful selection and possible adaptation of the various models of introducing digital storytelling into the classroom have to happen, to help students convert their social and cultural capital into educational advantages.
Description: Higher Education Learning & Teaching Association of Southern Africa (HELTASA) Conference, Stellenbosch, 28-30 November 2012
Appears in Collections:Appsc - Conference Papers
Prof. Eunice Ivala
Ms. Joseline Veronica Felix-Minnaar
Dr. Daniela Gachago

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