NMD 443

InstructorLogisticsOverviewMaterialsOutcomesGradingCourse ExpectationsPolicies

Joline Blais

Associate Professor of New Media

126 IMRC



T/Th 2-3:15

IMRC 112

Prereq: NMD 343 or instructor permission

3 credit hours.

Office hours

Tuesday 12:30-2:30 (via sign up by noon), Wednesday by skype (jolineblais), and by appointment

NMD 443 Digital Narrative 2 hones your story skills and the digital tools that will allow you to bring them forth and publish them. Each of you will propose your own project, and I will customize both class and individual work depending on projects undertaken by students.

  • We will begin with a personal history, called My Story, to situate ourselves as writers and to explore connections to our families and communities–sources of our stories.
  • We will also explore some basic Digital Story techniques as we work through the Digital Story Cookbook.
  • You will then create a Story Proposal that will serve as your contract for your work during the semester.

Your stories, and the work you do to build them will be the core of the class. The resources below will structure and support your projects:

  • For information about classwork and due dates, see the Classwork page.
  • To view fellow student projects, see Stories.
  • To get inspired, look at the Resources Page.
  • To support your skills see Tips.

Required hardware

  • Laptop (MacBook Pro)
  • Airplay or AirParrot for linking to overhead monitors

Recommended software

  • Prezi
  • Twine
  • Unity 5
  • Storify
  • iBooks Author

Required texts

  • Anatomy of Story
  • Wired for Story
  • Online Story Models–see schedule

Online Resources

Class website:  http://443.nmdprojects.net/2015/

Personal portfolios in wordpress

Student Learning Outcomes

Course Goals: To build on the tools, techniques and understanding of Digital Narrative 1 with a goal of producing a portfolio of published digital stories using a number of different strategies and formats.

Instructional Objectives

At the conclusion of the course, you will

  • Learn tools and code necessary for the production of digital stories
  • Create a series of short digital stories and a main story project
  • Explore the ways digital media make use of and challenge traditional story techniques like linear plot, character development, level of interactivity, and setting.
  • Explore strategies and techniques for online publishing of stories, including production of a personal portfolio, using sliders, galleries and carousels.
  • Develop skills for evaluating and giving useful feedback to your peers
  • Prepare a public presentation of your stories

Grading criteria

  • 30% Final Project
  • 45% Weekly Assignments
  • 25% Class attendance/participation

There will be no final exam.

Grades are slightly curved and follow this scale:

  • A Outstanding
  • B Above average
  • C Average
  • D Poor
  • F Failing

Completing work

Do get your assignments done on time. Assignments have clear logged due dates on Moodle, and you will lose points for late work. Also. you can’t catch up on missed conversation if the group has moved onto another topic.

Don’t expect to be able to submit a project after the end of the semester.


Don’t miss class. Attendance

  • present=4 pts,
  • late=3 pts,
  • excused or makeup =2 pts,
  • absent=0 pts.

Do talk to me beforehand if you know you’ll have to miss time in class. We MAY be able to schedule remote make-ups IF we have enough lead-time.


Do raise your hand to ask me a question at any time. (You’ll get equal participation credit for naïve or sophisticated questions!) But be prepared that I may choose to bracket your question in order to keep the discussion on-topic and on-time.

Do raise your hand to challenge my opinions or to correct factual errors.

Do respect the views of others. As in a good e-mail list, keep controversy to a maximum but flaming to a minimum.

Do stand up and move around if the instructor gives you a break.

Don’t just sit there when a break is called and check your Facebook account, at least not until after you have walked around a bit. The break is there to get your blood running.

Don’t interrupt your fellow students during oral discussion.


Do bring your laptop to every class. Your instructor will let you know exceptions to this rule.

Do close your laptop as soon as class begins. Your instructor will tell you when to open it again.

Do make use of the various labs on campus, including IMRC, and the Collaborative Media Lab in Fogler Library (features specialized audiovisual equipment and individual rooms) and the Still Water lab across from 420 Chadbourne (for projects related to community and/or open access).

Do feel free to use your computer, when allowed by your instructor, for relevant activities like to take notes, to look up Web sites related to an ongoing discussion, or to check a classmate’s project for compatibility with your browser.

Don’t use your laptop for distracting non-class business like checking email.

Don’t use your laptop when your instructor declares a “laptop off” period, e.g. to focus on discussion or exams.

Personal constraints

Do see if you qualify for financial aid for a new laptop. Here’s how:

  • Ask the Computer Connection to send Velma a quote for the price.
  • Bring the letter she prepares for dept chair signature to Financial Aid in Wingate Hall.


  • If you want a laptop over $2000, it may help if you ask Velma to include the reason you need this in her letter.
  • This award refunds your purchase when your loan is dispersed. So if you owe a balance on your bill the money will go to that first.
  • You can only do this once in your college ‘career’.
  • For more answers check with Financial Aid at 581-1324.

Do come see me if you have an especially difficult personal constraint–such as your own illness, or children or parents you need to care for. I may not be able to help, but I can probably direct you to someone who can. Students with disabilities can also do an end-run around me and go directly to the office of Ann Smith of Services for Students with Disabilities (581-2319).

Don’t wait until these constraints affect your class work, however. By the time the dog ate your DVD, it’s too late to earn my sympathy.

Academic honesty

An instructor who has probable cause or reason to believe a student has cheated may act upon such evidence, and should report the case to the supervising faculty member or the Department Chair for appropriate action.


If you have a disability for which you may be requesting an accommodation, please contact Ann Smith, Director of Disabilities Services, 121 East Annex, 581-2319, as early as possible in the term.

Discriminatory language

The University of Maine’s non-sexist language policy may be viewed at:   http://www.umaine.edu/WIC/both/language.htm.

Sexual Discrimination Reporting

The University of Maine is committed to making campus a safe place for students. Because of this commitment, if you tell a teacher about an experience of sexual assault, sexual harassment, stalking, relationship abuse (dating violence and domestic violence), sexual misconduct or any form of gender discrimination involving members of the campus, your teacher is required to report this information to the campus Office of Sexual Assault & Violence Prevention or the Office of Equal Opportunity.

If you want to talk in confidence to someone about an experience of sexual discrimination, contact:

For confidential resources on campus: Counseling Center: 207-581-1392 or Cutler Health Center: at 207-581-4000.

For confidential resources off campus:  Rape Response Services: 1-800-310-0000 or Spruce Run: 1-800-863-9909.

For non-confidential support services on campus (helpers may have to report the incident to others who can help):

Office of Sexual Assault & Violence Prevention: 207-581-1406

Office of Community Standards: 207-581-1409

University of Maine Police: 207-581-4040 or 911

Or see the OSAVP website for a complete list of services at http://www.umaine.edu/osavp/

Syllabus Disclaimer

In the event of an extended disruption of normal classroom activities, the format for this course may be modified to enable its completion within its programmed time frame. In that event, you will be provided an addendum to the syllabus that will supersede this version.