Interactive and Immersive Fictions - ENGL7310

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2021 to 2022
Canterbury
Autumn Term 5 30 (15) checkmark-circle

Overview

In taking this module, you will have the opportunity to become a future creator, shaping and changing the landscape of how we tell stories. Whether through multi-platform storytelling, alternate reality games, immersive theatre, locked room experiences, interactive art and gallery exhibitions, virtual and enhanced (augmented, integrated, mixed) realities, cross-media marketing campaigns, or hybrid projects, the possibilities for interactive and immersive narratives are constantly growing and developing, as audiences, readers and users begin to expect more from the ways in which stories are told.

This module explores how interactive and immersive fictions enable and empower us to rethink and reshape how stories are told within a range of different contexts. In an interdisciplinary and collaborative environment, students will develop creative skills such as how to build immersive imaginary worlds; how to craft story archaeologies; and how to incorporate user interactivity into different forms of fiction, in order to create experiences that have emotional and psychological value. We will examine questions such as: what makes a meaningful interactive or immersive story? How do interactive and immersive forms change the way we think about terms like narrative and reader? What influences a person's experience of an immersive or interactive story? And what do current, past and future technologies make possible for the telling of stories?

To take the module, students need only have an interest in the craft of storytelling and a vivid imagination; previous experience of gaming or programming may be useful but is not essential. With an emphasis on practical creative work and collaborative learning, this module will interest students from a range of backgrounds, including creative writing, game design, arts, marketing and theatre.

Details

Contact hours

Contact hours: 45
Private Study Hours: 255
Total Study Hours: 300

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods:

Written Assignment (1,500 words) (20%)
Final Project (3,000-word story bible; creative portfolio; digital prototype; creative piece; design portfolio; or similar, with 500-word rationale) (60%)
Reflective Seminar and Workshop Participation (500 words) (20%):

Reassessment methods:
Alternative Assessment: 100% coursework (3,000-word story bible; creative portfolio; digital prototype; creative piece; design portfolio; or similar, with 500-word rationale)

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List:

Glassner, A, Interactive Storytelling: Techniques for 21st Century Fiction (Routledge, 2004)
Gröppel-Wegener, A and Jenny Kidd, Critical Encounters with Immersive Storytelling (Routledge, 2019)
McErlean, K, Interactive Narratives and Transmedia Storytelling: Creating Immersive Stories across New Media Platforms (Routledge, 2018)
Montfort, N, Twisty Little Passages: An Approach to Interactive Fiction (MIT Press, 2005)
Murray, Janet H., Hamlet on the Holodeck (MIT Press, 1998)
Phillips, A, A Creator's Guide to Transmedia Storytelling (McGraw-Hill, 2012)
Riggs, S, Hustad, M and Lim, MP, The End of Storytelling: The Future of Narrative in the Storyplex (Beat Media Group, 2019)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1. apply critical approaches to interactive, immersive and multi-platform fiction texts;
2. understand and reflect upon what makes a meaningful interactive or immersive fiction text, including its potential social functions and logistical applications;
3. understand, and apply, the key principles of world-building and its applications in interactive and immersive fictions;
4. develop their skills in building compelling narrative 'goals,' story archaeologies, and multi-platform plots;
5. understand the importance of audience, reader and user experience and engagement, and the contexts within which interactive and immersive fictions might be used.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1. develop their capacity for applying close reading skills to a range of interactive and immersive fictions;
2. develop their ability to work collaboratively and solve problems creatively, sharing individual strengths and skills within the context of a team;
3. effectively communicate their creative ideas using a variety of methods;
4. reflect on the development of their own creative praxis.

Notes

  1. Credit level 5. Intermediate level module usually taken in Stage 2 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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