Storytelling is an effective means of imparting knowledge, beliefs, and traditions. In its multimedia form, digital storytelling has been made popular by the digital storytelling movement led by the Center for Digital Storytelling established in 1998. While digital storytelling has existed for a few decades, its use in education has been researched relatively recently over the past fifteen years (Holtzblatt & Tschakert, 2011). As a result, it is important that continued research is done in order to understand how students are learning through digital storytelling. The constructivist environments created through digital storytelling classes and workshops need to be researched in order to gain a deeper understanding of students’ learning processes and to ascertain how to continue to create effective learning environments for them. In this study, the researcher endeavored to determine how the use of digital storytelling exercises is providing quality, learning experiences for students by examining the process of creating digital stories through the lens of social learning theory. This was done by analyzing data from an in-person interview conducted with the founder of the Center for Digital Storytelling, Joseph Lambert, the examination of another published interview from Lambert’s (2013) book, Digital Storytelling: Capturing Lives, Creating Community, as well as other publications. Utilizing Honebein’s (1996) seven pedagogical goals of constructivist learning environments to design the categories of coded data, the researcher created a set of guidelines that served as a framework of assessing to what extent digital storytelling workshops created constructivist learning environments. By analyzing the themes that emerged from the data, the researcher concluded that Lambert’s digital storytelling work at the Center for Digital Storytelling, reflected all seven essential characteristics of constructivist learning environments in a significant manner, thereby indicating that the workshops at CDS were indeed constructivist environments.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (EdD) -- Learning technologies; Digital storytelling -- Research; Constructivism (Education) -- Case studies; Educational technology -- Study and teaching

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Mallette, Leo;