Task 3 Essay

logoTechnology Design Portfolio
Laura Revels
Student Mentor: Carla Lee
Assessment Code: TDT1
June 12, 2018


TDT1 – Task 3: Multimedia

I am a Master Digital Storytelling Trainer who has been teaching and facilitating digital storytelling (DS) workshops for 10 years. Recently I have been teaching DS in-person and online for the last five years with the Alaska Community Health Aide Practitioner program. I have co-authored several peer-reviewed articles on DS and have participated in several research projects that demonstrated DS is a culturally-respectful way to share cancer education with the Alaska Native people and Community Health Aide Practitioners (CHAPs). I will be using personal experience as well as peer-reviewed articles I co-authored to develop an online storytelling course.

The intended audience are participants who want to learn digital storytelling and/or are Alaska Community Health Aide Practitioners (CHAPs). Their ages range from 25 to 65, and the learners predominantly work in Tribal health (public health) and have at least an associate’s degree. Most participants take the workshop as a way to learn how to work with community members to create their own first-person narrative around a wellness issue that is important to the individual and/or community.

For this assignment, I used the free version of VideoPad (https://www.nchsoftware.com/videopad/index.html) to develop a short video to demonstrate how a script and a simple storyboard is used to produce a short video. The video is called: “Computers Drive Me Crazy”. This video is an example of a video that will be used in a future tutorial on how storyboarding is used in the DS process and will be used to introduce participates to video editing software. For the purpose of this assignment, it was used to demonstrate how a storyboard is used to plan out your video. I also have included the script, as it is the first step in the process of digital storytelling before developing a storyboard.

A simplified storyboard is used, as most participants are new to video editing, and it has been my experience, because we are introducing the concept of video editing and its process, and teaching new technology tools, the storyboard has to be as simple as possible so as to not to overwhelm the participants.  A simplified storyboard is also used due to time constraints as DS is usually taught within 18-21 hours workshop.

Tools that were used:

  • Copyright-free images and clipart from Pixabay.com and Publicdomain.net. These images were public domain and required no attribution.
  • Western Governor University’s student microphone to record the narration.
  • Sound Recorder software (free with Microsoft Office Suite) to record the audio.
  • VideoPad, a free video editing software program.
  • Microsoft Word to develop the script and storyboard.

In DS, we teach and use free software only so that participants will not incur any costs in developing their video stories. We remove the possible barrier of software costs so participants will be able to return to their community and continue to develop stories.

The elements developed for this assignment is an example of a script, a simplified storyboard, and a story video. These will be used for the yet undeveloped online DS course. These are only partial elements of a larger course lesson.

Step One

  • In DS, in the early process of teaching, we will first show several digital stories, then we’ll start talking about their story ideas, and then cover how their final story will serve as a script for their DS. For this assignment, I created a short 60+ word story, to demonstrate what a story/script, storyboard, and DS/visual story will look like. In a DS workshop, the script is usually between 250-300 words, but for teaching, I keep it short as a way to demonstrate the steps.

Step Two

  • Once the story if finalized then the next step in the DS process is to develop a storyboard. The storyboard is an important part of the process as it helps myself, as well as the learners, to plan out what images and text may be needed for their video story and to be able to visually see the flow of the story. Storyboarding is natural to me as I use it in video editing and to develop online classes.

For online classes, the storyboard serves several purposes. Not only does it help you with the flow of the content, but it also serves as a visual communication tool with your subject matter expert (SME). The SME can see how the content will be laid out and identify if there are gaps, and/or change the content in order to help with the flow of the content. It also serves as a way to get approval from the SME on how the content is going to be presented. Once the storyboard is signed off, then I can start developing the online learning module. This is one way I have used storyboards, and I have taught how to use storyboards extensively in my DS work.

For DS, it serves as a visual planning tool to help participants chose which images and text they need to effectively tell their story in the most focused and impactful way. We teach participants how to use storyboards so that that their DS does not look like a “slide show” and distracts the viewers from their story. I do teach as a part of the DS process, how to choose images for one’s story, but this will not be covered in this assignment.

Appendix 2 is an example of a simplified storyboard that is used in the DS process. We usually give the participants the option of handwriting on their script which images they will use, or we show them how to create a table in MS Word with 2 columns; how to insert their images and copy and paste their text into the table. The participants usually do not have advanced technology skills and are new to video editing, so we keep this step as simple as possible so that we do not overwhelm the learner.

I’ll share with the learners how a storyboard is like a recipe we are trying to put together in order to make something, and in this case, a digital story, and is an important part of the process. By omitting this step, would be like omitting one of their most important ingredients in their recipe and then end up wondering why it didn’t turn out. I’ll share that by having a storyboard, you can see if something if something is missing or something needs to be added to help with the flow of the story, and what images can be used to best demonstrate what they are saying.

I’ll continue to explain how the storyboard can help one to start visualizing what their story will look like and how it will help the video editing process when the participants start putting together their story in VideoPad. By having their story planned out, participants will not have to figure out what needs to be in their story at the same time they are learning a new software program and video editing tools.

In DS, there are several lessons covered throughout the workshop and they are taught in a short, sequential order, with each lesson building on the one before. This is similar to a storyboard, it lets you see the order of the media you are developing and helps build upon the previous image or scene.  By being able to visualize beforehand through a storyboard, it can help reduce the stress or confusion that can happen in any multimedia project especially when you’re introducing new concepts or technology.

Step Three

  • The last step was to take the images and audio elements and develop a short video to demonstrate how the script and storyboard build upon each other to develop a story video. To develop the video in VideoPad:
    • Open VideoPad and select New Project.
    • Click on Add File and select all your images and audio that you’re going to use.
    • Refer to your storyboard to see what text needs to be created for the Title and click on Add Text and type in your title text.
    • Next refer to your storyboard to see what order the images should be placed on the Timeline – drag your images to the timeline after the title of the story.
    • After you placed all your images, move the time bar to the end of the images and click on Add Text, and type in your credits.
    • Next, drag your audio recording to the Audio Track.
    • Using your storyboard as a guide, add transitions, and adjust the images to match with your audio.
    • Once you are satisfied with the results, click on Export Video File, select the .wmv format and render your movie (.wmv is the only format available in the free version of VideoPad).

This is a high-level view of how to create a video in VideoPad. The video I created for this assignment, was to demonstrate the end product of how a storyboard is used to plan out your story video and will be used for a yet undeveloped online module for DS.

The script, simple storyboard, and a snapshot of the video are attached in the Appendix.


  1. Script (click on to open a PDF document of the Script)
  2. Storyboard (click on to open a PDF document of the Storyboard)
  3. Webpage PDF of video (click on to open a PDF document of the video)

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