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Publication Detail
Multimodal Assessment: Recognising new forms of expression and communication in higher education
  • Publication Type:
    Conference presentation
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  • Authors:
    Florén H
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  • Keywords:
    Multimodal assessment, multimodal meaning making, equity
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This presentation will address the question how are patterns of meaning making and assessment changing in higher education? In digital environments in higher education students increasingly work with various digital formats, creating multimodal texts that combine modes such as image, moving image, sound and writing. For reasons of equity, such multimodal and digital forms of expression could prove advantageous for students from increasingly diverse linguistic and cultural background (Jewitt, 2014). As the tools, modes and means for expression and communication are changing rapidly, which also entails changes in how teachers understand and recognise knowledge, it is increasingly argued that assessment practices need to be better aligned with these new possibilities for students to communicate and express themselves (Archer, 2014; Jewitt 2014). This presentation will present and discuss the relationship between students multimodal meaning making and teacher recognition of learning and knowledge. To this end, examples from two courses will be presented. The empirical data was collected for a pilot study, which is part of research into assessment of students’ multimodal text-making in Swedish higher education. Two teachers, from two courses in different academic subjects and disciplines, have been interviewed focusing on how they recognize and assess four students’ learning and knowledge. Data includes students’ digital material and teacher feedback in the Learning Management Platform, and audio recordings of the teacher interviews. The pilot study offers insights into changing patterns of meaning making and assessment in a digital learning environment, activities which in turn are reflections of teaching practices. A multimodal social semiotic framework and multimodal transcription (Kress, 2010; Kress & van Leeuwen, 2006) provides tools for studying students’ multimodal texts (written, spoken, visual, gestural). Such multimodal texts are complex representations of knowledge and learning. Improved methods and tools for analyses, of these complex multimodal texts would be profitable, and could inform assessment practices in higher education and the understanding of complex representations of knowledge and learning.
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