Creating multimodal texts, such as digital stories or short films, is an emerging practice which is facilitated by the use of digital technologies. As digital technologies are becoming increasingly common in classrooms it is possible, and relatively easy, for students to create multimodal texts as a classroom activity. Creating and assessing texts consisting of several modes, such as images and sound, can be seen as an expansion of the concept of literacy, which traditionally mainly has been related to written and spoken language. In this article, negotiations between students and the teacher about what assessing multimodal texts mean and imply in a classroom setting is in focus. Interactions during lessons and interviews with the students are analyzed in order to illuminate how the students, through negotiations come to interpret and relate to the assessment of multimodal text. Since the task of creating a multimodal text and the assessment of it is relatively new in a school setting, neither students nor the teacher are used to creating, or assessing, texts which incorporates images and sounds. The analysis of negotiations in classrooms concerning the assessment of multimodal texts illuminate that what unfolds in the classroom is a manifestation of both local and systemic levels of activities. The assessment criteria given to the students can be seen as an object intended to link processes at different timescales, and belong to a middle level between the local and the systemic. However, if what the criteria mean when creating a multimodal texts in an educational setting is not explained and negotiated in context, the criteria does not appear to affect the situated practice at the local level to any great extent.
|Keywords:||Multimodal Text, Assessment, Activity Theory, Timescales|
PhD Student, Department of Applied Information Technology, IT-faculty, Gothenburg University, Göteborg, Sweden