the best of qualities is dispassion

Digital Story Response No. 1: “Ethnolinguistic Profile”

I chose to critique the digital story “Ethnolinguistic Profile: Self-study of a Multilingual Person” as it was attached to the scholarly article that I responded to this week, which was “Digital Storytelling: Using Different Technologies for EFL.”  Christiansen and Koelzer (2016) included it as an example of a student-produced, compelling, digital story. Another reason for choosing it is the fact that it addresses L2 learning and ethnolinguistic issues that frequently arise, and all too often hamper language learning. Teaching EFL is my professional focus and this digital story addresses some of my concerns with L2 learning environments.

Talking Not Permitted

I found this digital story quite well done and therefore find it difficult to critique. Added to this is the fact that I have never produced a digital story, which makes it doubly difficult to review, and/or criticize another’s fine effort. That said, this assignment requires that I examine and review a digital story, so critique I will.

Cake with Caption

This digital story appears to have been produced using MS PowerPoint, or another slide show presentation application. The graphics, photos, and text are added to the slides, and then the narration is later overlaid. The completed slide show is then exported in video format, which is one of the most straightforward ways to produce a digital story, and in this case, it worked quite well.

Blended Languages

The video runs for six minutes and thirty seconds and I found it a bit long. I’m not certain where it should be cut, but possibly some of the language examples that are presented could be simplified, which would reduce the overall run time. I noted that the audio track levels vary between some of the slides, and maintaining similar levels would also improve the production. The background level of the music track could also be increased, although I prefer background music that is too low, versus music that overpowers the narrator.

I truly appreciate the images that were used in this production and found that they definitely supported the story. I do indeed understand why Christiansen and Koelzer (2016) included it as a successful example of a student-produced digital story.

6 thoughts on “Digital Story Response No. 1: “Ethnolinguistic Profile””

  • Hi Robert, I read your profile and I love Korea. My wife was born there and we went back to traveled around the country in 2014. I found the youtube that you are referring to and I must that it’s not very well produced but the message was sincere and well thought out. I agree that the audio and visuals could have been a bit better.

    I feel that next generation video will have more interactive component as building in participation and community is what digital story telling is all about.

    • Hi Travis, and thanks for the comment. I’m happy to hear that you enjoyed Korea. My wife is Korean and we met the and married the last time I was living here, which was sixteen years ago. And yes, building in participation is welcomed.

  • Hi Robert. Thank you for sharing this digital story with us! I actually have a few comments for your critique. First, it would have been helpful to include a link to the video (or did I miss the link?). I think I found it, but having a link would make sure that I am viewing the same file that you are critiquing. Second, you use some acronyms/terminology that I am not familiar with, so I would have liked to see them spelled out or at least have links to resources that would help me get an understanding of the terms.

    I also found the story to be compelling. I really enjoyed watching it 🙂



  • Hi Robert,
    I really enjoyed watching the video as well as reading your critique. I was born and raised in Seoul, south Korea. I moved to Colorado when I was 20 years old. Now I’m 34 years old and still learning new expressions in English on a daily basis. I was totally empathizing with the digital story because I also taught myself English through TV, internet, social media, texting, etc. Although I attended ESL classes for three months and got my BA here in CO, I didn’t feel the joy of learning English from any of classes I took. I hope we can change vibe and make learning any language fun and exciting!


    • Hi Hani, thanks for sharing your English acquisition experience and my hope is to change the vibe, as you suggested. My wife, Hyejin and I lived in Gangnam in the 1990s, before Psy and his style appeared on the internet. A Kpop boyband lived very near us and our street was often choked with their admiring fans. It was fun, but a bit noisy. This time, we live in a very quiet older neighborhood in Uijongbu-Shi, which is better suited to our endeavors, and my age.

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