Salford City College

Project description:

Storycircle’s eighteen-month collaboration with Salford City College has evolved over three phases of experimentation and facilitation focused on embedding processes of narrative exchange within the college. Each phase was negotiated, developed and co-designed in collaboration with study participants (staff, students, managers).


Phase 1 was exploratory. Using storytelling workshops, observations and interviews with college leaders, staff and students, this phase generated dialogue around existing social and digital infrastructures. Desired outcomes for narrative exchange identified here were (1) a public-facing storytelling event; (2) a website showcase linking students’ (digital) content to curricular-related project briefs; and (3) the integration of social media with college activities, with training workshops for staff and students.

In Phase 2, constraints identified in Phase 1 led to a study re-design that focused on Twitter and a Twitter event linked to the launch of a new college radio station in which college Wi-Fi network was experimentally opened up to students’ mobile phones for the first time and digital screens around the dining-hall were used to display student tweets in real-time.

Towards the end of Phase 2, students were invited to participate in a broader exchange linked to a local arts festival based on storytelling. This was continued into Phase 3 with two strands of activity one with art and design students augmenting an on-site exhibition with QR-codes linked to web-hosted audio narratives and the other exploring web-based image archiving.

Research partners:

  • Senior Management and teaching staff
  • Students and former students
  • Departments: Art & Design, Media, Humanities, Performing Arts, Photography, Graphics, Textiles, Philosophy
  • Parents
  • Local elderly care homes
  • Local industry (BBC)

Key themes:

  • Digital storytelling
  • Inter-generational narrative exchange
  • Social media for narrative exchange in formal educational settings
  • Visual and Audio narratives
  • Participatory dialogue across multiple contexts

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