One of my friends on the national teaching-center scene is Chris Clark, the Assistant Director and Learning Technology Lab Coordinator for the Kaneb Center for Teaching and Learning at Notre Dame. Chris is also the author of the really helpful blog, NspireD2: Learning Technology in Higher Ed.
In today’s blog post, Chris reflects on whether faculty members have recognized the validity of mediums other than text in conveying meaning. He notes:
A large number of us were educated at a time when other media were little more than a curiosity. For better or worse, however, the world has changed. The written word is still very important, but meaning is increasingly conveyed using images, video, and sound. That change applies not only to the research function of the university, but also to teaching and learning.
He provides a partial list of indicators that a class — whether in instructor presentation or in student assignments — uses the communicative power of multi-media techniques. Here’s the list:
- Students in one of my classes create concept maps
- I have played a YouTube video during class to illustrate a point
- I encourage students to include images in their essays
- My course website features an audio or video welcome message
- At least half of the slides in my last PowerPoint contain no text
- I recently played music in the classroom
- My most recent handout includes a photo
- One of my class assignments is to critique an infographic
- I have recorded voice comments in Word documents submitted by students
- One of my course projects is a multimedia digital story
- I know where to find images with a Creative Commons license
- One of the “textbooks” for my course is a full-length movie
Do any of these methods apply to you, your students, or your class? Chris’s challenge: let’s make the list much longer. In the comments to this entry, share some strategies that we can add to the list.
Image: Caffeine Crystals, by Annie Cavanagh & David McCarthy