TROn Monday, the 19th of October, my school had organised for all staff to have a professional development day. One of the speakers was Tony Ryan. Tony Ryan is an Australian learning consultant who is obsessed with two things:
1. His own learning; and
2. Everyone else’s learning

He gave us an inspirational talk, enlightening us about the future of education. In his talk, he focused specifically on how Information and Communication Technologies are changing the future of business and stressed the importance for educators to embrace technology in their pedagogy, to be able to provide students with skills required to participate in this digital world. To quote Tony Ryan

” 10-year-olds today will more likely be creating their own employment by the time they leave school. While the accredited university degree will still have merit up ahead, the simplistic pathway of school-uni-work is not as clear-cut as it used to be. Young people will need extensive support in making this new transition, and will require skills such as project-based management, critical and creative thinking, outright initiative, and various gamification applications… as well as heaps of digital savvy.

That age group of 12 to 16 year old’s are our future. When we think of the future of a city or a community, we only need to look at that group right now. If they are encouraged to be innovative at this age, they’re more likely to be innovative up ahead. And a culture of innovation has significant benefits for a city. As well as the development of IP that generates income, the city becomes a global magnet for other innovators. ”

Please find attached the link to his blog to read more about his views on this topic.

http://www.tonyryan.com.au/blog/

Reflection 2 : Participation and the digital divide

digital divide

The photo ” Digital divide and people with disabilities” (Law Office of Lainey Feingold, 2013)….

As digital technologies pervade every aspect of modern Australian society, I had presumed the digital divide only affected developing countries. However, it became clear that despite the rapid growth of internet use in Australia many people continue to be digitally excluded (Alam & Salahuddin, 2015, p. 1; Walton, Kop, Spriggs, & Fitzgerald, 2013). Factors contributing most to the digital divide in Australia are income, age, tertiary education, and indigenous heritage (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2007; Alam & Salahuddin, 2015). This inability to participate in a digital world results in disadvantages in terms of benefitting from a quality education, obtaining critical information, getting employment, socially connecting, and accessing many health and financial services that are essential to living in modern day Australia ( Regional Telecommunications Review, as cited in Walton et al., 2013).

I began to understand that although a lot has been achieved in terms of increasing the community’s material access to technology, such as mobile services, Ka band satellites, and the philanthropic works of various individuals, the digital divide still exists. This is because a significant number of disadvantaged people do not have access to the skills, tools, or language needed to be digitally engaged; in short, the “access gap” might shrink, but a “fluency gap” might remain (Kearney, as cited in Walton et al., 2013; Selwyn, 2004; Burkhardt et al., 2003). Therefore, the digital divide is the inequality between individuals, businesses, and geographic areas, not just in terms of access to information technology (IT), but also in the capability to use IT, which affects the outcomes of exploiting IT (University of South Australia, 2013; Howell, 2012. p. 56; Wei, Teo, Chan & Tan, 2011). It is important therefore, that both digital access and digital literacy issues are addressed in order to bridge the digital divide.

I now appreciate the importance of incorporating digital literacy in schools to help bridge the digital divide between home, school and community. As a future educator, I must support students who do not have access to technology at home and provide ample opportunity for both material access to technology and digital literacy within the school. Being digitally inclusive is not just about accessing digital technology, but using digital technology to achieve everyday tasks and goals which is necessary to participate fully and prosper in a digital world.

Total word count: 384 – In-text references: 61 = 323

References:

Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2007). The “Digital Divide” (No. 4147.4.55.001). Retrieved from http://www.abs.gov.au

Alam, K., & Salahuddin, M. (2015). Assessing digital divide and its determinants: a case study of households’ perception in the Western Downs region of Queensland.

Burkhardt, G., Monsour, M., Valdez, G., Gunn, C., Dawson, M., Lemke, C., . . . Martin, C. (2003). enGauge 21st century skills: Literacy in the digital age. Naperville, IL: North Central Regional Educational Laboratory

 

Howell, J. (2012). Teaching with ICT. Digital Pedagogies for Collaboration and Creativity. Victoria: Oxford University Press.

Law Office of Lainey Feingold. (2013). Digital divide and people with disabilities [Image]. Retrieved from http://lflegal.com/

Selwyn, N. (2004). Reconsidering political and popular understandings of the digital divide. New Media & Society, 6(3), 341-362.

University of South Australia. (2013, February 4) . Using Satellites to overcome the digital divide [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bmlpx887Du8

Walton, P., Kop, T., Spriggs, D., & Fitzgerald, B. (2013). A digital inclusion: empowering all Australians. Australian Journal of Telecommunications and the Digital Economy, 1(1), 9. http://dx.doi.org/. DOI: 10.7790/ajtde.v1n1.9

Wei, K.-K., Teo, H.-H., Chan, H. C., & Tan, B. C. (2011). Conceptualizing and testing a social cognitive model of the digital divide. Information Systems Research, 22(1), 170-187.

Reflection 3: Transmedia

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Prior to this unit I was unacquainted with the concept of transmedia. Upon reflection I realised my initial definition of transmedia was similar to multimedia. However, through the readings and activities, I learned that transmedia, is a process of methodically conveying a story, message, or theme, across various media platforms, to create entertainment that enhances and develops the main story, or grand narrative ( Alper & Herr- Stephenson, 2013; Dudacek, 2015; Gomez, 2013; Jenkins, 2011). An important element of transmedia is the opportunity to learn something new as the story unfolds, through participation, interaction, engagement and collaboration (Dudacek, 2015; Jenkins, 2013). Therefore the difference between multimedia and transmedia is the level of interaction. In a multimedia application, the content is delivered by a single click of a button, for example, a CD rom which uses text, video and audio in the same interface (Jenkins, 2013). In transmedia, however, users have to actively seek out information and be fully engaged by following a story or information across “multiple modalities” and critically analyse all the information received. This ability is known as transmedia navigation (Jenkins, as cited in Alper & Herr-Stephenson, 2013; Jenkins, 2010).

I began to look for evidence of transmedia around me. An example is illustrated in the above photograph, showing various platforms through which my children engage with LEGO. There are books, games, social media, the movie, television shows and the visit to LEGO Land. I learned that, depending on the context, purpose and audience, transmedia can have various forms called “Transmedia logics,” such as, transmedia storytelling and transmedia play (Alper & Herr-Stephenson, 2013).

Transmedia play displays characteristics like mobility, accessibility, resourcefulness, replayability and sociability, which are the key underpinnings of constructionism (Alper & Herr-Stephenson, 2013; Howell, 2012, p. 9). Therefore, engaging in transmedia play encourages curiosity, exploration, experimentation, collaboration and problem solving, skills that have been identified as vital in learning, and reflect characteristics of a 21st century digital learner. The learner must “play” with information, exploring ideas and concepts, whilst developing a deeper understanding of the subject (Jenkins, 2013). As a future educator, working with digitally expectant natives, I can see the power of incorporating transmedia in my digital pedagogy to help create an engaging and immersive learning experience.

Word count: Total number of words 372 – In-text references 42 = 330 words

Please note: The above photographs are my personal photographs and therefore have not been referenced.

References:

Alper, M., & Herr-Stephenson, R. (2013). Transmedia play: Literacy across media. Journal of Media Literacy Education, 5(2), 2.

Howell, J. (2012). Teaching with ICT. Digital Pedagogies for Collaboration and Creativity. Victoria: Oxford University Press.

Jenkins, H. (2010). Transmedia Education: the 7 Principles Revisited. Re: Confessions of an Aca-Fan. Retrieved from http://henryjenkins.org/2010/06/transmedia_education_the_7_pri.html

Jenkins, H. (2013, March 18). T is for Transmedia. [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://henryjenkins.org/

Transmedia in my home.

Having been introduced to the concept of Transmedia in Topic 3, I have been intrigued and inspired by the power of transmedia to engage an audience. Since then, I have tried to see if I can identify how transmedia entertainment franchisees use different platforms to market their products and attract viewers. I decided to use a toy that was ubiquitous in my home, namely LEGO, to see how many different platforms of this humble building block, my family engages with on a regular basis. This is what I found : The photograph, shows the many platforms of LEGO in my house.

P1110732We started with the blocks, the went onto watch the movies and read the books. Now one of my children likes playing the video games and using their Facebook page. The other likes to play the online games and watch the endless television shows. We have also visited LegoLand, the theme park in Malaysia.

henry_headshot

” Transmedia storytelling represents a process where integral elements of a fiction get dispersed systematically across multiple delivery channels for the purpose of creating a unified and coordinated entertainment experience. Ideally, each medium makes it own unique contribution to the unfolding of the story.” – (Henry Jenkins, 2013)

Reference :

Jenkins, H. (2013, March 18). T is for Transmedia. [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://henryjenkins.org/