Postmodern Education and the Digital Age: Can Transmedia Provide a Beneficial Model for Education
Transmedia is a relatively new term which describes the use of multiple media platforms to expand upon a story, theme or concept. Reading the units content presented the idea of incorporating the model of transmedia into my digital pedagogy. The applications for transmedia to be appropriated for use in education are extensive. I find transmedia can address several teaching theories, curriculum outcomes and enhance learning. “Transmedia experiences invite children to draw upon multiple literacies, including digital, textual, visual and media literacies, as well as social skills and cultural competencies” (Alper & Herr-Stephenson, 2013).
Through the constructivism of technology and the motivating enthusiasm it generates, transmedia allows for deeper engagement and enriched learning experiences. With the translation of content across different platforms (Johnson, n.d) students can construct their own meanings allowing for greater understanding and increased comprehension (Alper & Herr-Stephenson, 2013).
Transmedia is a by-product of the digital revolution Howell addresses in her book Teaching with ICT (2012, p.15). It promotes creativity, self-expression, critical thinking, play and experimentation and addresses the digital expectancy of society while fostering the lifelong learning skills self-education requires.
An additional strength of transmedia which could prove invaluable in the education setting is its strategic ability to increase accessibility, allowing for a wider range of student participates by extending broadly across digital and non-digital platforms and creating many different points of entry. In this way transmedia demonstrates its inclusiveness by being flexible and diverse. By taking into consideration the uniqueness of students and working across a variety of contexts transmedia creates many different entry points (Jenkins, 2007). This adaptability and easily personalised approach creates heightened interest for students with varied learning styles and abilities.
Perhaps the involvement of transmedia concepts is the key to adapting education to the unique learning styles of digital natives. Twenty-first Century students are digital natives with distinct learning preferences (Howell, 2012). Research shows that students born into today’s era of mass technology, post modernism and globalisation are predisposed to technology (Howell, 2012; Prensky, 2008). Transmedia harnesses this. Drawing on networking (Hsia, 2011), the rapid information sharing of globalisation and highly visual forms of communication “participants pool information and tap each other’s expertise as they work together to solve problems” (Jenkins, 2007).
If used correctly the transmedia model promises to be a highly effective enhancement to learning and a valuable addition to a teacher’s digital pedagogy.
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Alper, M., & Herr-Stephenson, R. (2013). Transmedia play: Literacy across media. The Journal of Media Literacy Education, 5(2), 366-369. Retrieved from http://digitalcommons.uri.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1123&context=jmle
Big data internet of things [Image]. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://databigandsmall.com/
Howell, J. (2012). Teaching with ICT: Digital pedagogies for collaboration and creativity. South Melbourne, VIC: Oxford University Press.
Hsia, L. (2011). How transmedia storytelling is changing TV. Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2011/11/17/transmedia-tv/
Jenkins, H. (2007, March 22). Transmedia storytelling 101. [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://henryjenkins.org/2007/03/transmedia_storytelling_101.html
Johnson, D. (n.d). A history of transmedia entertainment. Retrieved from http://spreadablemedia.org/essays/johnson/#.VT2ZEZPu8bA
Prensky, M. (2008). The 21st century digital learner: How tech obsessed iKids would improve our schools. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/ikid-digital-learner-technology-2008
Transmedia [Image]. (n.d.) Retrieved from http://www.mindtrek.org/2014/program/
Ullyses, G. (2010, October 17). What is transmedia [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9uX_65IFpY