With my growing interest in how digital technology has changed and continues to change both the world and our knowledge of it and with my exposure (as an administrator) to research showing that capstone work is by far the most effective way to get students to synthesize their undergraduate education, I developed “Digital Stories.” “Digital Stories” shines a light on computer science and information systems, strategic priorities at Le Moyne, but it also involves (on a rotating basis) all the disciplines which document how the computer, the internet, social media have transformed human experience or changed how and what we know about our world.
The course is offered as a public lecture series. A spine of lectures by me, historically and philosophically locating the dominant issues of today, are supplemented by guest lectures from across the College. A typical week thus consists in an early week (Monday or Tuesday) late afternoon framing class by me and a late week (Wednesday or Thursday) lecture by another Le Moyne faculty member. Finally, the generous funding of the McDevitt Core Professorship has allowed us to bring in one internationally known expert per semester for the “McDevitt Core Lecture,” a public event that exposes our students to the wider world.
In line with national recommendations for best practices in general education/core education, Digital Stories requires each student in the course to complete a “signature work” project tying the course-theme to any area or practice of their own interest. Working with mentors from those areas or specializations, students pursue their own passions, often documenting them and presenting them at the end of the semester.