Language, Literacy, and Sociocultural Studies ETDs

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The research presented is a qualitative case study of an after-school video club for elementary age students. The focus of the project revolved around one main question: how do students socially read and write videos? The broader goal of the question was to understand how students socially read and write multimodal texts with video as a subset. The study was approached from sociocultural approach to literacy that recognizes videomaking as a new literacies practice. As a literacy practice, videomaking incorporates multiple authors, multiple communicative modes (visual, spatial, aural, gestural, and linguistic), and involves complex and dynamic social interactions between both readers and writers of texts. Using qualitative methods of data collection and analysis, one site (the Midway Elementary After-School Video Club) was studied for a complete school year. There were 23 participants in the study including 20 4th and 5th grade students, two adult volunteers, and a participant/researcher. The findings of the study outline how participants at the site socially read and wrote videos: by inventing, revising, and following a socially established videomaking process (pre-production, production, post-production, and distribution), by behaving in ways that were influenced by sociocultural contexts specific to videomaking at the site (protocols, roles, tools, products), and interacting in specific and identifiable ways (inquiring, instructing, suggesting, and evaluating) to both solve' and 'find' problems during literacy events. Videomaking required multiple authorship and, depending on how students responded to the sociocultural contexts, the opportunity for democratic writing was made possible and sometimes inevitable. Through the study of social videomaking, the research deomonstates the social nature of all literacies.'


new literacies, writing, video

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Department Name

Language, Literacy, and Sociocultural Studies

First Committee Member (Chair)

Zancanella, Don

Second Committee Member

Mahn, Holbrook

Third Committee Member

Kingsley, Karla