Faculty and Student Stories

In narratives, the focus will draw from a faculty or students first-person perspective. This technique is useful for retelling experiences and situations. Narrative techniques can be applied as an effective instructional and learning tool. Stories can be imaginative, educational, persuasive, and informational in nature.

Time Consideration

Project Design: Consult with an instructional designer to strategically align higher order learning objectives, assignments and best practice evaluation techniques.

Length: Time invested will be determined by the length and scope of the narrative.

Stages: Choose narrative type, create a script, plan through the storyboard, gather supplemental artifacts to accompany personal narrative, create, share and reflect. Digital supplements include , photo essay documenting contexts, video reflections, simulations, and multimedia presentations.

Assessment: Evaluation can occur during both the design and development process. Additionally, assessment can be directly applied to the final artifact. Sample evaluation tools may include: checklists, storyboards, peer evaluation, reflective paper, rubric, self-evaluation.

Skills Utilized

  • Presentation of ideas and knowledge
  • Enhanced Communication
  • Expression of Opinion
  • Critical Thinking
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Assessment skills through both peer and self-evaluation

Target Skills

  • Visual Literacy
  • Social Learning
  • Organization of Ideas
  • Contextualization

Pros & Cons


  • Make abstract or conceptual content more understandable.
  • Appeals to diverse learning styles


  • When adding digital imagery, respect for copyright and intellectual property may become problematic.
  • Time consuming.


  • Keep narrative small and focused.
  • Familiarize students with the story arc:
    • Beginning – introduce the characters, set the scene and plot.
    • Middle – provide details and climax.
    • End – conflict resolved, discovery, revelation and insight.


As a faculty member, creating your own stories can assist in the presentation of new material capturing the audiences attention and increasing student interest to explore new concepts (Burmark, 2004; Ormrod, 2004). Storytelling is a powerful tool that can help motivate, increase the process of retaining new information and aid in the comprehension of difficult material (Hibbing and Rankin-Erikson, 2003). For students, it allows them to work on authentic assignments, develop a personal and academic voice where they can then find themselves better engaged within the content.


Almost Paradise…

is a personal reflection narrative that provides an account of a mother bringing her children to the United States from South Korea. The plot concentrates on the search of a better life. It outlines the difficulties of new places, religion and culture. Benefits:

A.) Students learn about people from diverse backgrounds and gain an appreciation of the types of hardships their fellow classmates may have faced.
B.) Facilitates discussion around current and local events such as race, multiculturalism and globalization
C.) Student who chooses personal reflection narrative technique will benefit from sharing their story with others and may assist in eliminating the distance international students feel between themselves and peers.
D.) A positive outlet for coping with some of the emotional issues that transpire in a personal narrative.