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Multiliteracy and the developmental student: Ideas and Practices

Contact information for project/initiative leadership: Phillip Presswood, Galveston College,
Year in which this project originated:
Research/articles on which this project is based:

o Presswood cited the following:
 Diana Hacker and Danielle DeVoss, Understanding and Composing Multimodal Projects: A Supplement for a Writer’s Reference, Bedford St. Martins: 2012
 Tracey Bowen and Carl Whithaus, eds., Multimodal Literacies and Emerging Genres, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2013
 Gloria E. Jacob, “The Proverbial Rock and Hard Place: The Realities and Risks of Teaching,” Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, v. 56, no. 2, Oct. 15, 2012, pp. 98-102.
o His work is based on the concept of multiliteracy, which has been explored in the following articles and websites:
 The New London Group, “A Pedagogy of Multiliteracies: Designing Social Futures,” Harvard Educational Review, v. 66, no. 1, Spring 1996.
 Rob Simon, “On the Human Challenges of Multiliteracies Pedagogy,” Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, v. 12, no. 4, 2011, pp. 362-366.
 Multiliteracies: Exploring New Learning ( )
 New Learning Online ( )
 New Literacies and Classroom Practice ( )
 Partnership for 21st century Skills ( )

Essential programmatic elements of project/initiative:

o The center is part of the Student Success Center and all members of the community can use it.
o Students are required to use their lab hours, marked by visiting the multiliteracy center, to do this. Each level of English has 3 lecture hours and 2 lab hours, so he uses the lab hours for the multi-literacy project. Colleges without lab hours for work in developmental education may not have the same freedom.

Essential instructional practices of project/initiative:

o Per Presswood’s supplied list of assignments, students worked with
 Visual Analysis
 Summarizing video clips
 Defining terms, especially multimodal composition and multiliteracy
 Audio recording/computer literacy
 Video recording
 Peer review
o Other smaller less expensive lessons might include
 Having students read an image
 Asking them to self-identify with an image
 Asking them to interpret a story, image, or video by writing a poem or short story
 Use the buffet model for a capstone (traditional essay or paragraph, creative work, or multimedia/interactive work) That latter two options should include a paragraph or a half-page describing why they chose to submit and that document must follow traditional style rules and use MLA format.

Implementation costs:

In his presentation, Presswood stated that he received a $320,000 Scaling and Sustaining Success (S3) grant from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. However, the elements most essential to the multiliteracy center, namely the sound-proof recording studio with high end A V material, cost less than $50,000.

Impact of project:

This is still being determined, but the project is part of a larger movement to introduce 21st century skills across the board.

Link to pertinent documents:
Link to pertinent documents:

Name of reporter: Rosie Banks
Email address of reporter:
Date of report: April 4, 2014

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