Digital Storytelling Workshop

September 18, 2023 by Sonja Johnston

The Critical Digital Humanities Initiative (CDHI), a tri-campus research initiative funded by the University of Toronto’s Institutional Strategic Initiatives (ISI) program, is pleased to announce a 2.5 day in-person digital research storytelling workshop from Friday Nov 24-Sunday Nov 26, 2023, at the University of Toronto, St. George Campus (location TBD, Friday afternoon) and the Collaborative Digital Research Centre (CDRS) at the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) campus (Sat. and Sun.).   

Digital storytelling is a growing approach to research creation and dissemination that emerged from feminist and disability culture as well as anti-colonial, anti-racist and Indigenous thought.    

 Traditionally, digital stories are 2-to-5-minute creative micro documentaries highlighting how inequities and resistances are embedded in people’s lives. The affective dimension of digital stories lends to their impactful use as knowledge translation tools across disciplines and sectors.    

CDHI is building on the narrative, technical, creative and political tools of traditional digital storytelling methods to offer a digital storytelling workshop tailored to researchers interested in sharing their research findings in an engaging and creative short video form.    

By the end of this workshop, participants will have completed a digital story about their research. No experience is necessary or needed to participate in this workshop. We will provide all the tools and hands-on support needed.

This workshop will provide:    

  • 1 hr pre-workshop online consultation to prepare your script  
  • An online hands-on and open studio environment to develop the narrative and technical skills to create a 2–5-minute digital research story   
  • Trained facilitators to support you through the process of digital research storytelling from conception to completion   
  • Knowledge and experience in the cutting-edge and experimental method of digital research storytelling   
  • Peer-to-peer learning with a select group of tri-campus U of T researchers enrolled in this workshop   

 Preparation and Equipment

  • Each participant will come prepared to the workshop with a clear idea of the research topic they wish to turn into a story.  We will provide further details in advance of the workshop about how to prepare your research story.   
  • Each participant will need to bring their laptop computer, headphones, and will be asked to download no-cost editing software in advance of the workshop.   

Workshop Schedule  

  • Friday Nov 24, 1:00pm-4:30pm, location TBD (St. George)  
  • Saturday Nov 25, 10:00am-5:00pm, CDRS (UTM)  
  • Sunday Nov 26, 10:00am-4:30pm, CDRS (UTM)  


Any full time U of T faculty, student, staff, postdoctoral fellow, or librarian may apply.  


This workshop is free for all participants. However, given workshop demand and costs, we are creating a cost-recovery model for late cancelations, no-shows or uneven attendance. As part of the application process, applicants will be asked for fund numbers and/or credit card information. $500 will be charged for cancellations after November 10th, 2023 (two weeks before the workshop start date), for no-shows, or for those who miss the equivalent of a half-day or more (excepting emergencies or illness). We realize this is unusual, but since space is limited we want to make sure that folks are truly committed to attending and have been successful in clearing their calendar for this event.  
Application process   

Faculty, students, postdoctoral fellows, staff, and librarians are invited to submit applications via email to by October 5 at 16:00pm EST.  

In your submission, please include:  

  • Your idea for a 2-4 minute story. We don’t expect that you will know how to frame a digital story, but we need a little information about what piece of your overall research project you want to be focusing on and why. In this section, we recommend including a paragraph about your proposed digital story, and a paragraph about how it relates to the overall research project. When discussing the research project, please explain at what point you’ve reached with the research, analysis, and research results (450 words max)   
  • The intended audiences of your digital story (200 words max)   
  • A brief explanation of how your research story emphasizes questions of power and social justice. (150 words max)  
  • A description of your familiarity with any videomaking software or creative writing (again, no experience expected or necessary). (100 words max)
  • If applicable: Describe any supports (physical, sensory, learning related) you will need to access the workshop.


Applications will be evaluated on the following criteria:  

  • Clarity of proposed research story
  • Relationship to the overall research project
  • Clarity of intended audiences
  • Engagement with questions of power and social justice  


Members of the CDHI Exec Team will adjudicate applications. Results will be communicated by Wednesday October 11, 2023. 

How to Reach Us   

For questions about the Digital Storytelling workshop, please write to Julia Gruson-Wood: To reach the Faculty Director, please write:

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