Multimodal Literacy and Cultural Identities: 21st-century Technologies and Issues of "Self-authorship" and "Voice" in U.S. Institutions of Higher Education

Dr. Sheila Carter-Tod,
Dr. Shelli Fowler
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Current research in the humanities (including fields such as composition and rhetoric) places increasing emphasis on examining how various forms of technology influence and ultimately shape students' encounters with and creation of "texts". As the Net Generation, or Millenials, become the learners in our institutions of higher education, teachers are discovering the need to redefine the traditional academic modes for creating, communicating, and receiving domain knowledge. While theorists have begun to analyze the effects of multimodality on our perceptions and definitions of literacy, most often these analyses focus on describing and explaining our role as teachers in the midst of these current shifts and technological trajectories. What seems to be absent is a consideration of how past modes of communication and literacies can inform and/or problematize our view of current multimodalities. For example, few studies acknowledge the ways in which marginalized groups historically used multiple modes of communication to address their limited access to and lack of authority to use what were then the dominant forms of communication. A consideration of this past gives all of us in the humanities a broader perspective on multimodality, and expands and reconfigures how technology tools, such as ePortfolios, further student agency as they develop "self-authorship" and "voice".

Keywords: Cyberspace, Technology, Ethnicity, Identity, Difference, Teaching and Learning
Stream: Cyberspace, Technology
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Multimodal Literacy and Cultural Identities

Dr. Sheila Carter-Tod

Virginia Tech

Dr. Shelli Fowler

Virginia Tech

Ref: H05P0663