Digital Storytelling as an Instrument of Learning: Storytelling as a Primary Form of Communicative Learning through Mobile App Books

By Caroline M. Crawford and Marion Smith.

Published by The International Journal of the Book

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: April 4, 2014 $US5.00

Storytelling has been a generational way for people to share cultural history, develop one’s own presentation style, and teach others important lessons. With the introduction of the Digital Age, the engagement and understanding of the information that is shared through digital storytelling efforts help further support one’s understanding of the information necessary to take away from the storytelling effort. Further, what was once framed through primarily textual displays can now return to its performance art realm, wherein mobile application products have the opportunity to frame multimedia books into storytelling endeavors. Further, with Digital Age tools available, mobile application books are no longer only the purview of publishing organizations but, instead, can be designed, developed and made globally available through a grassroots effort. The hypothesis suggests the philosophical understanding of the cultural impact of storytelling within the Digital Age, specifically supported by the work of Vygotsky, Wittgenstein, and similar social learning theory researchers. This proposed idea advances knowledge in the fields of instruction, especially realms of distance education such as mobile application books, and supports rethinking the importance and framework of what is termed the “book” within the Digital Age.

Keywords: Storytelling, Digital Storytelling, Mobile App Books

The International Journal of the Book, Volume 11, Issue 2, April 2014, pp.23-33. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: April 4, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 293.500KB)).

Dr. Caroline M. Crawford

Associate Professor, Instructional Design and Technology, University of Houston-Clear Lake, Houston, Texas, USA

Caroline M. Crawford, Ed.D., is an Associate Professor of Instructional Technology at the University of Houston-Clear Lake in Houston, Texas, United States of America. She earned her doctoral degree from the University of Houston in Houston, Texas, United States of America, in 1998, with specialization areas in Instructional Technology and Curriculum Theory, and began her tenure at the University of Houston-Clear Lake (UHCL) the same year. At this point in Dr. Crawford's professional career, her main areas of interest focus upon communities of learning and the appropriate and successful integration of technologies into the learning environment; the learning environment may be envisioned as face-to-face, hybrid and online (virtual or text-driven) environments. Dr. Crawford may be contacted through her e-mail address,

Dr. Marion Smith

Associate Professor, College of Business, Texas Southern University, Houston, Texas, USA

Dr. Smith is an Associate Professor at Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas, USA. Her areas of interest revolve around quantitative and qualitative methodological research efforts, management information systems, computer information systems, as well as the successful integration of instructionally relevant technological support within different types of learning environments.


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