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E801: Action 2.6: Inclusion and Globalisation

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E801: Action 2.6: Inclusion and Globalisation

Johnson, D. & Kress, G. (2009) 'Globalisation, literacy and society: redesigning pedagogy and assessment' in in Soler, J., Fletcher-Campbell, F. & Reid, G. Understanding Difficulties in Literacy Development: Issues and Concepts, London, Sage.

The inclusion of digital literacies as part of the portfolio of literacies required by modern learners has been studied in many contexts - that of the different forms of digital literacy, the skills required for accessing information in a digital format, the skills required for extraction and evaluation of information etc.

A lot of institutions initially believed that a techno-based curriculum would cure all problems and level the playing field for people with disabilities. A lot of money was spent on various forms of technology and much of it was wasted.

Currently, in online and distance learning, the readjustment is towards  learner-centred activities with universal design for online learning materials BUT with an emphasis on user-controlled flexibility. Collaborative learning is on the increase with the use of peer networks via Twitter, forums and blogging.

Policies and institutions may take a while to catch up but individual teachers are leading the way with some fabulous activities for their students.

Assessment is also improving dramatically with online portfolios and peer feedback.

The following is from a previous blog post:

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Guidelines - Version 1.0 (CAST, 2007)

UDL has three primary principles that provide the structure for these Guidelines:

Principle I: Provide Multiple Means of Representation (the "what" of learning). Students differ in the ways they perceive and comprehend the information presented to them.

I am currently working with a student who has a severe visual impairment. She lost most of her sight at the age of 16 years by which time she had already discovered that her preferred learning style was visual. She still has enough sight to revise by drawing out large diagrams but it is not easy for her.

Principle II: Provide Multiple Means of Expression (the "how" of learning). Students differ in the ways they are able to navigate a learning environment and express what they know.

I have experienced the following adjustments in the universities where I work: allowing speech impaired people to plan and design PowerPoint presentations using the inbuilt speech features; allowing a student with ME to verbally present the information rather than spend all evening writing a report on a field course;

Principle III: Provide Multiple Means of Engagement (the "why" of learning). Students differ markedly in the ways they can be engaged or motivated to learn.

One third year module at Keele University is Inspirational Landscapes in Geography. Assessment is 20% test and 80% project. Previous student projects have included:

    • Impact of the Malvern Hills on Elgar's music
    • Video diary of a walk in Wordsworth's footsteps
    • Photomontage of the experience of Dovedale
    • Influences of Indian landscape on fashion design
    • Johnny Depp: face, costume and landscape
    • Landscapes of Lord of The Rings
    • Thomas Hardy and the "Wessex" landscape
    • Landscape design for computer games

The module sounds fascinating and I know several students who really enjoyed it. http://www.esci.keele.ac.uk/people/pgk/geg-30014/handbook.html




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