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Storyboarding is known as popular technique from the movie industry. “Storyboards are graphic organizers such as a series of illustrations or images displayed in sequence for the purpose of pre-visualizing a motion picture, animation, motion graphic or interactive media sequence, including website interactivity. The storyboarding process, in the form it is known today, was developed at the Walt Disney Studio during the early 1930s” (Wikipedia, March 2011)

The meaning of storyboarding depends on the context of use. Even with a given context (e.g. , it can mean different things).

See also:

Storyboarding as design tool

Storyboards can be used as a software, multimedia and web design tool and should illustrate "what users can do" through a story, stories or a non-linear story.

In instructional design, a storyboard can illustrate a learning scenario from a learner's perspective.

Sometimes the word storyboard is used as a synonym for wireframes like web wireframes. According to usabilitynet, “A storyboard is a low fidelity prototype consisting of a series of screen sketches. They are used by designers to illustrate and organize their ideas and obtain feedback. They are particularly useful for multi-media presentations.”. We discourage that use, i.e. a storyboard should describe the unfolding of story and not a information architecture or menu structure.

According to the NASA Usability toolkit, “Storyboards are sequences of images which demonstrate the relationship between individual events (e.g. screen outputs) and actions within a system. A typical storyboard will contain a number of images depicting features such as navigation menus, dialogue boxes and windows. The storyboard can be shown to the design team as well as typical users, allowing them to visualize the composition and scope of possible interfaces and offer critical feedback.”

Fluidproject defines the purpose of storyboarding as ensuring “that the team does not overlook any intents and steps that are critical to the work." ("Rapid Contextual Design", Holtzblatt et al, pg. 229) Using a combination of pictures and text, it is a great technique for working out the details of how a user will accomplish specific tasks in a new design.” Fluidproject, furthermore defines journey frameworks as schematic storyboards that map out the experience of visitors while they go through the various stages of the interactive experience.

Within software, web design and instructional design, we suggest that storyboarding means creating a kind of static or interactive design document that illustrates various stages of an interactive experience.

As a tool that educates

Learners can be told to produce multimedia storyboards as a form of creative writing / story telling.

To plan educational video sequences

Teachers or course designers can plan video-clips for teleteaching, podcasts, MOOC, etc.

In addition a storyboard also could help with design pedagogic scenarios, although we believe that using an educational design language is far easier and productive.


(to do ...)


Offline tools
Online tools
  • StoryboardThat. Quote: “Storyboard That presents a great opportunity for students to work together. When creating a storyboard, students can discuss what they want their story to say, how to structure it and what imagery to use.”, retrieved oct 3, 2012.
Using Sketches


  • Storyboarding, Fluidproject, Added by Daphne Ogle, last edited by Daphne Ogle on May 22, 2009