Final Project

Edit, March 11, 2014: Links to final device narratives:


Download this assignment as a PDF.

As a class, we will produce a digital publication called Devices.

Each group will write a “chapter” of this publication: the story of an electronic object, told in a series of essays, maps, photographs, and videos. I am not looking for a Wikipedia-style encyclopedia entry on your device, but a thoughtful, well-documented, opinionated, and theoretically engaged reflection on your device’s use and importance. For examples of similar narratives on which you might model your chapter, see these essays. The word count for the written portion of the essay should be approximately 2,500.

Each device narrative will consist of a multimedia essay that addresses these four dimensions:

  • Current cultural importance: What does the device’s ownership and use signify in our culture?
  • Prefigurations: What devices preceded it? How did it evolve to look and act the way it does?
  • Corporate ownership: Which company produces this device? What is its background, who owns it, and what else does it produce?
  • Supply chain: Where do the parts for this device come from?

You are welcome to include maps, photographs, video, and other media, but at a minimum, your narrative should include an essay and well-documented still photographs.

In addition, your essay should include an “About” section, in which you reflect on your methodology, explain why you made the choices you did, and describe who on your team did what.

The specific look and feel of the essay will be left to your group, but we will be using the ScrollKit framework so that you can easily incorporate multimedia into your essay. Please see below for some examples of ScrollKit narratives that you can use for inspiration.

Scroll Kit tutorial 1: Basics

Scroll Kit tutorial 2: Parallax Effect

Examples of ScrollKit Narratives

Final Project Milestone Schedule

1B (January 9)

Group assignments

 2B (January 16)

Decide on device.

 Friday, January 31, by 11:59 p.m., submitted via CCLE

Bibliography due, including sections on:

  • Cultural importance
  •  Supply chain
  • Prefigurations
  • Corporate ownership

 Friday, February 7, by 11:59 p.m., submitted via CCLE

Outline of essay due, including delegation of tasks

Friday, February 14, by 11:59 p.m., submitted via CCLE

Mockup of Scroll Kit narrative due

Friday, February 14, by 11:59 p.m., submitted via CCLE

Media assets assembled

Friday, February 28, by 11:59 p.m., submitted via CCLE

Draft of written narrative due

 Friday, March 7, by 11:59 p.m., submitted via CCLE

Draft of multimedia narrative due

 10A (March 11) 

Presentation of multimedia narrative

Grading rubric 

(adapted from Ghanashyam Sharma, “Digital Storytelling in the Composition Classroom” )

CONTENT (Possible points: 30)
Written narrative The written discussion is substantive, thoughtful, well-argued, and well-edited. Relevant literature is reviewed and acknowledged. Students have paid attention to the fluidity, accessibility, and concision of the language. Possible points: 20
Methodological reflection The methodological reflection (contained in the “About” page) is substantive, thoughtful, well-documented, and thought-provoking. It should include not only a description of which technical choices the group made, but an explanation of why members made these choices. Possible points: 10
RHETORICAL ELEMENTS (Possible points: 20)
Purpose The authors establish a purpose of the overall chapter early on and maintain the focus on that purpose throughout the work. As in print-based composition, the purpose may be stated or implied. Possible points: 10
Organization and coherence The overall structure of the chapter and placement of assets in that structure are effective. There is a good beginning, middle, and end. The amounts of emphasis given to different parts or issues make sense. All the elements and parts of the work rhetorically fit together and are effectively presented within the overall logical framework Possible points: 10
MEDIA (Possible points: 25)
Media selection and use Media — including video, audio, and still photographs — is carefully selected, well-integrated with the rest of the piece, and supports the meaning of the overall narrative logically and aesthetically. Media assets should not be distracting or “flashy for the sake of flash”; they should be substantive and contribute to the overarching narrative. Possible points: 20
ACADEMIC CONVENTIONS (Possible points: 10)
Citations The student has cited external sources and chosen them with care. Possible points: 5
Language issues The student has paid sufficient attention to grammar, spelling, mechanics, and other linguistic issues. Possible points: 5