module specification

DN5003 - Narrative (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Narrative
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School The Sir John Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design (The Cass)
Total study hours 300
120 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
180 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Project Work
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year City Tuesday Afternoon
Year City Tuesday Morning
Year City Friday Morning

Module summary

This module encourages understanding of ‘narrative’ as a key element within creative practice. The principal purpose of this module is to explore understanding of how found or individually generated narratives can be utilised imaginatively within design practice. Narrative within design practice regularly employs fictional devices as stimuli. Thoughtful reflection on storytelling conventions will enable you to enrich and extend the range of creative expression.

Within this module, you will be encouraged to de/construct and reconstruct narrative to inform or subvert the reading of design practice for public dissemination. Intelligent, creative selection of media and process will enable you to enrich and extend the range of your practice, developing confidence in communicating through narrative studio themes.

Prior learning requirements

Pass & Completion of Prior Level

Module aims

This module seeks to enable you to:

• Explore narrative themes, patterns and types within design practice
• Deepen confidence and evolve a distinctive approach through research and re-interpretation of narrative within your design practice
• Further relevant practical skills in order to employ expressive themes within creative practice
• Develop critical understanding of semiotic reading in relation to visual and material design practice


Through studio projects, students will normally develop knowledge and experience of:

• analysis of existing creative practice utilising narrative
• research, development, production and presentation of project/s resulting from critical response to narrative
• development of practical and intellectual knowledge and skills in relevant media and processes for production of outcomes
• seminars and peer reviews to debate your work and that of others
• suitable locations and sites for exhibition for narrative work

Learning and teaching

Studio projects will normally make use of a range of learning opportunities, such as:
Lectures, seminars and peer reviews, workshops, exhibition, external visits and blended learning.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, you will be able to:

Knowledge and Understanding
Reflect upon and test how narrative techniques can be communicated effectively in creative practice

Cognitive Intellectual Skills
Critique your practice in relation to thematic metaphors and motifs employed across relevant global cultures and traditions

Transferable Skills
Exercise initiative, responsibility and adaptability in your individual practice, finding ways to communicate narrative within a personal approach to design

Subject Specific Practical Skills
Apply the creative and technical skills needed to effectively select from, manipulate or combine relevant media in the construction, interpretation and presentation of a given or self generated narrative

Assessment strategy

At regular reviews, students will present summary of work in progress, including reflection upon intellectual and practical development.

Each component of work in development will be assessed formatively and feedback given. Satisfactory completion of relevant technical/ workshop activities and continuing independent practice will also be monitored.

A final mark is given at the end of the module, as a measure of the qualities of the completed portfolio in relation to achieving the module’s learning outcomes. Written summative assessment will be provided corresponding to published assessment criteria. Work must be carefully organized and presented to indicate the development of work and the content clearly labeled. Coursework requirements will be stipulated in project briefs and detailed in the module guide. Students are required to attend all timetabled taught studio and workshop sessions.


Begleiter, M. (c2001) From Word to Image: Storyboarding and the Filmmaking Process, Michael Wiese Productions
Busch, A. (2005) The Uncommon Life of Common Objects, Metropolis
Caputo ,T.  (2002) Visual Storytelling: The Art and Technique, Watson-Guptill
Chapman, J. (2005) Emotionally Durable Design, Earthscan
Cunningham, J. (2005) Contemporary European Narrative Jewellery, Edinburgh: Scottish Arts Council
Eisner, W. (2008) Graphic Storytelling and Visual Narrative: Principles and Practices from the Legendary Cartoonist, W.W. Norton
Fulton, H., et al (2005) Narrative and Media, Cambridge University Press
Gorbman, C. (1999) Unheard Melodies: Narrative Film Music, Harvard University Press
McClean, S. (2007) Digital Storytelling: The Narrative Power of Visual Effects in Film, MIT Press
Thompson, K. (1999) Storytelling in the New Hollywood: Understanding Classical Narrative Technique, Harvard University Press

Additionally texts and other reference materials will be identified by studio tutors annually that support a
specific studio theme.