ELE 3906 Applied Storytelling

ELE 3906 Applied Storytelling

Course code: 
ELE 3906
Communication and Culture
Course coordinator: 
Ratna Elisabet Kamsvåg
Course name in Norwegian: 
Applied Storytelling
Product category: 
Bachelor - Programme Electives
2025 Spring
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

We are influenced by other people’s stories, and we influence others with our own. They become a part of the foundation for our new experiences in life and they emerge into our identities. That goes for the good ones. However, there are a lot of stories that never make it past the sender, so to speak; even if it has a great mission. That is simply because the ingredients have not been structured in a way that enable the power of storytelling to play out.

In this course, we learn about the entities of a good story, and when and how to use it wisely. Through the history of rhetoric, from the ancient to the present time, we have used stories, mythos, to engage and convince an audience of our ideas. The most successful businesses in the world, use storytelling as a strategic tool, but the good news is, that these are all insights that can serve everyone. Not just the biggest brands with the most money.

A good story can make an artist on the music scene. A good story can get you the job that you want. A good story can get your customers more emotionally involved with your brand. Hence, the skill of being a good storyteller, has become an important tool that one is looking for at a workplace.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

By completing the course, students should know how and when to use the insights from storytelling as a strategic tool. They should also be able to:

  • Pin down the characteristics of stories.
  • Explain the power of a good story.
  • Structure a story to enable the persuasive dimension of this tool.
  • Map out possible outcomes.
  • Make model readers.
  • Apply stories at a workplace as a part of a strategy.
Learning outcomes - Skills

Students should develop storytelling and -making skills. After completing the course, they should be able to:

  • Write stories that engages.
  • Map out the characteristics of a story told.
  • Explain why and how it works.
  • Amplify the power of a narrative by creating a story.
  • Match the story with the target group.
General Competence

It is important for students to be able to take part in ethical discussions about storytelling as a strategic tool, and to be able to navigate through using this tool with a moral compass. A good story is not always the same as the truth, but still it can carry meaningful messages. To be aware of this distinction is crucial.

Course content

Applied storytelling will give the students an understanding of the origin of this subfield, but the current position and practicalities of being a professional storyteller make out an even bigger part of the course; hence the various topics are not equally discussed in depth.

The topics cover:

  • Storytelling from ancient to present time
  • The power of storytelling as a strategic tool
  • The narrative structure of a good story told
  • Characteristics of stories
  • The creative process that is required 
  • The corollary effects of stories
Teaching and learning activities

The course consists of 15 in-class sessions (30 hours). The seminars will not be recorded. Throughout the course, students will also develop their own stories and submit original and restructured/reworked versions of these as mandatory coursework. The project-paper (ordinary exam) will be based on the story-development students do with their own stories.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information

Re-sit examination

Students that have not gotten approved the coursework requirements, must re-take the exercises during the next scheduled course.

Students that have not passed the written examination or who wish to improve their grade may re-take the examination in connection with the next scheduled examination.


Higher Education Entrance Qualification


Deviations in teaching and exams may occur if external conditions or unforeseen events call for this.

Required prerequisite knowledge
Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Submission PDF
Exam/hand-in semester: 
First Semester
1 Semester(s)
Project paper
Exam code: 
ELE 39061
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Ordinary examination
Total weight: 
Course codeCredit reduction
EXC 3676100
Credit reductions:
Course code:EXC 3676
Credit reduction:100
Student workload
30 Hour(s)
Prepare for teaching
20 Hour(s)
Includes individual or group case analyses of stories in video and text formats
Student's own work with learning resources
95 Hour(s)
40 Hour(s)
Work on project paper throughout the semester
15 Hour(s)
Mandatory coursework
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 7,5 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of at least 200 hours.