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ABSTRACT

The purpose of this study was to determine if using digital storytelling instruction to

teach nonfictional writing would result in the attainment of higher nonfictional writing

assessment scores. According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)

writing scores, Louisiana ranked 45th in the nationwide writing assessment. These scores indicate

a statewide weakness, which could be directly related to current teaching practices. What will

engage the 21st century student? The original hypothesis of this study stated that fourth grade

students who are given digital storytelling instruction will show higher nonfictional, writing

composition assessment scores than those students who are not given digital storytelling

instruction.

The target population for this study consisted of fourth grade students at Clancy

Elementary School for the Arts in the Jefferson Parish Public School System. The accessible

population was 49 fourth grade students. Based on their school performance score, Clancy

Elementary has been rated academically unacceptable for the past five years, in which educators

practiced teaching methods set forth by the Louisiana Comprehensive Curriculum.

Both groups of participants were taught the same writing curriculum that is outlined in

the Louisiana Comprehensive Curriculum and were given the same writing prompts throughout

the course of the study. The experimental group was taught with elements of digital storytelling,

which involved a variety of technologies, such as computers, digital images, and video,

integrated into the learning process. The control group was taught using the traditional

curriculum, which involved methods, such as paper and pencil activities. Since the study’s focus

was on nonfictional writing, all writing samples were nonfictional.

usage. style and audience awareness. mechanics. which is located in Appendix E. The criterion-related validity is based on students’ performances on the pretest compared to performances on the post test. and spelling. . The instrumentation utilized for this research study will be the Louisiana Educational Assessment Program (LEAP) Writing Rubric. A writing rubric is the appropriate tool for the assessment of the students’ samples because it evaluates project- based performances. The rubric measures elements of writing composition. sentence formation.