New Ways

Drawing from the curriculum review, eight course design and new literacies pedagogies have emerged that can be further developed to make practical improvements to the assessment units. These include:

  1. Review of the instructional design and integrated ICT to cater for meaningful and engaging learning experiences that incorporate new literacies.
  2. Cultural and critical literacy – further development of social and critical literacy practice (Gregory, 2002).
  3. Further development of the learning management systems and new literacy skills students require for the world around them.
  4. Further development of ethics and broader perceptions and understanding of media discourse.
  5. Cross-disciplinary/trans-disciplinary opportunities. What choices do the students have to combine their assessment and collaborate with peers outside the classroom setting? (Kist, 2001).
  6. Recognition of students prior learning and literacy skills.
  7. Further development of student surveying and conferencing during at the conclusion of units of study.
  8. Consideration of Student ICT Expectations and ICT Competencies articulated in the Australian Curriculum being integrated to develop new literacies?

Review of senior course structure here or click on figure 1 below. The review illustrates new elements in red text and presents relationships to Luke and Freebody’s Four Resources Model (1999), new literacies and multi-modal texts.


Figure.1:Screengrab of senior course structure review

New structure and course design considerations 

Considerations of the original instructional design has been reviewed to gain a more in-depth and holistic view of how to best approach new literacy improvements and practical implementation of multi-modal texts. Figure 2 below represents the new instructional design considerations of the two units.

Figure.2: Instructional design considerations

Moodle and integration of ICTs in teaching and learning

Moodle is the LMS used for our blended learning delivery. Moodle has already been used for both units in the past, however, the new structure and approach will employ Luke and Freebody’s four resources model to further develop and enhance necessary and sufficient aspects of new literacies and multi-modal texts associated with the assessment units.

All content associated with the assessment units will continue to be made available to students on Moodle. Moodle incorporates a broad range of ICT tools to manage and transform teaching and learning opportunities. The use of Moodle for eLearning tools such as forums, wikis, podcasts and vodcasts will provide student development of new literacies and multi-modal texts. The online tools enable collaborative learning enabling a social constructionist learning framework of education.

Course design and new literacies pedagogy

To become effective communicators, all learners need to be proficient in four interrelated and interdependent dimensions of language use. The Four Resources Model describes the resources students need to access to be literate: code breaking resources, text participating resources, text using resources and text analysing resources.

  • Code breaker: these practices have to do with breaking the code of the letters used in texts.
  • Meaning maker: meaning maker practices are to do with making literate and inferential meanings of texts.
  • Text user: the focus of text-user practices is the use of texts in real-life reading situations .
  • Text analyst: these practices involve readers in the critical analysis of texts in order to understand how texts work.

(Luke and Freebody 2002, cited in
teachingresources/discipline/english/proflearn/Pages/textusing.aspx, 2014).

Figure 3 below represents an adaptation of Luke and Freebody’s Four Resources Model.

The elements surrounding the four resources model present the relationships and interconnections to course design, new literacies pedagogy and multi-modal texts.

Figure.3: Incorporating Luke and Freebody’s Four Resources Framework

Cultural and critical literacy

Trans-disciplinary opportunities within the school setting could be a useful method for the further development and incorporation of cultural and critical literacy. By offering students the choice to align the context of their other subjects with elective technology studies (animation and games) could help improve critical and cultural literacies in the assessment units while also reducing assessment quantity. Students could have the option to negotiate project work. Negotiated assessment between faculties could potentially reduce quantity of assessment while also improving project outcomes  e.g. elective technology teacher assessing the multimedia and interactive technology elements while the content in the project is assessed by the partnering faculty. Many cultural aspects can be inherited from other disciplines. To illustrate:

  • Humanities: pop-culture studies, sustainability in society, poverty and economics
  • Science: atoms, molecules and biology animations
  • Maths: animations on pythagorean theorem, tangents, theorem of calculus
  • English: cyber poetry, digital storytelling, explanation of discourse and Phonetics
  • Health and Physical Education: first aid animation, cardiology – how the heart works

Guest speakers from industry can extend and further developed ethics and critical and cultural literacies. Table 1 below represents three particular industry areas that can support critical and cultural literacies and practice.

Client Management Specialist Technology Specialists Games Specialists
  • project planning phases and management
  • scope of projects
  • how to deal with clients and negotiation skills
  • human resources analysis & communication techniques
  • analysis of engagement and invoicing processes
  • risks in project management
  • quality assurance processes and constraints
  • disaster recovery planning and analysis
  • work flow optimisation
  • methods for installing and optimising media, drivers and software
  • integrating associated technology systems into a project
  • working on and off-site , transporting technology equipment off-site
  • analysis of copyright and intellectual property
  • latest trends and influences in games and animation industries
  • sprite and graphic design
  • coding for interactivity in games and animation
  • game & animation design principles
  • instructional design
  • digital communication techniques
  • integrating sound effects and music

Table.1: Industry specific groups