Metaliteracy Infographic Created for MOOC Final Project

We welcome this guest posting from Holly Wehmeyer, Communications & Marketing Coordinator and Educator from the Intensive English Language Program at the University at Albany, SUNY. Holly participated in the first session of our Open edX MOOC Empowering Yourself in a Post-Truth World and created a Metaliteracy Infographic as her final project. Our Post-Truth MOOC is now in a self-paced mode so feel free to join and create your own project!

Characteristics of a Metaliterate Social Media User

by Holly Wehmeyer

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Characteristics of the Metaliterate Learner (Mackey & Jacobson, 2019)

For my final project, I chose to create an infographic on the characteristics of a Metaliterate social media user. I have watched the social media space become polarized and partisan along with the nation’s politics and wondered about my role in developing online communities of trust. I have watched friends and strangers argue past one another, post inflammatory memes, and eventually unfollow each other. How are we to compromise on important issues if we can’t even talk to one another? Taking this course was one step I chose to take in becoming part of the solution to this problem.

The infographic attempts to draw on the concepts we’ve learned in the course to help social media users reflect on how they approach social media and what and how they share information. I wanted to create a simple guide to being a responsible online citizen. I created the graphic using Canva, an online design tool that I’ve used previously while working on newsletters and other publications. It allows the user to create simple designs and offers a number of free icons and other graphics. I also used quotations and information from Mackey and Jacobson’s book, Metaliterate Learning for the Post-Truth World, which was not required reading for the course (other than the Introduction and first chapter), but which I read on my own.

Working on this final project certainly involved all four metaliteracy learning domains. In the behavioral realm, I was reminded of what I should be DOING – how I should be interacting with other people on social media – in responsible and civic-minded ways. My actions have consequences, so I should strive for the action that avoids harm and creates constructive dialog. In the cognitive realm, I’ve learned a lot about confirmation bias, inoculation theory, ideas about experts, and more. My background in Journalism had already given me a good grounding in the way media outlets choose photos, write captions, and construct headlines, but the course readings were an excellent reminder of how things have changed since I worked in publishing in the 1990s. In the affective domain, this course actually made me feel a lot better about my own behavior. I haven’t been doing such a terrible job online as I perhaps thought! However, there is always room for improvement. The course helped me recognize why I’m reacting strongly to certain posts or why I feel frustrated when my arguments don’t convince my opponent. Finally, in the metacognitive domain, I have reflected frequently on why I post certain stories and why I have certain reactions to other people’s posts. It has helped me ask questions of myself, many of which I’ve put into my final project.

In conclusion, by modeling the characteristics of a metaliterate social media user, both through this infographic and through my online behavior, I hope to teach others about the value of metaliteracy, to build those communities of trust, and to help return our online discourse to a place of civility and discovery.

New Metaliteracy Paper Presented at Conference in Frankfurt, Germany

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Trudi Jacobson, Karin Lach and Tom Mackey

At the recent Conference on Learning Information Literacy across the Globe in Frankfurt, Germany, Trudi Jacobson and Tom Mackey presented a new metaliteracy paper entitled “Developing Metaliterate Citizens: Designing and Delivering Enhanced Global Learning Opportunities.” This peer-reviewed essay was one of eight full-papers accepted to the conference and was co-authored with Kelsey O’Brien, Information Literacy Librarian, from the University at Albany. The slideshow for the presentation featured the metaliteracy model, a discussion of open pedagogy’s relationship to metaliteracy, and related metaliteracy projects, including the digital badging system and the Open edX MOOC Empowering Yourself in a Post-Truth World, which is now available in a self-paced mode. The conference was hosted and organized by the DIPF | Leibniz Institute for Research and Information in Education and was the final part of the Erasmus+ Project Information Literacy Online, a European project to improve students’ competencies.

Shown in the photo with Trudi and Tom is Karin Lach, Universitätsbibliothek, Fachbereichsbibliothek Anglistik und Amerikanistik, Wien (University Library, English and American Studies Library, Vienna), who is kindly working on a German translation of the metaliteracy goals and learning objectives.

 

Metaliteracy Goals and Learning Objectives Now Available in French

We are delighted to announce that the first translation of the Metaliteracy goals and learning objectives is now available. Buts et Objectifs d’apprentissage, the French translation, has kindly been provided by Florent Michelot, a Ph.D. candidate in andragogy at the Université de Montréal. Florent is developing a self-efficacy scale, partly based on metaliteracy principles, and had translated the document in connection with that work.

We would also like to thank Patti Kingsmill at Vanier College, who recognized that this translation would benefit others if accessible on this site, and assisted us with making the connection with Florent.

Merci beaucoup, Florent et Patti!

We continue to seek translations of the goals and learning objectives into other languages. We have a volunteer to translate them into German, but she would welcome collaborating with someone else, if there is interest. And if you are able to help with another language, we would be delighted. With your assistance, information about metaliteracy will become available to larger numbers of learners globally. If you are interested, please contact Trudi Jacobson (tjacobson at albany.edu) or Tom Mackey (Tom.Mackey at esc.edu).

Register Now for Empowering Yourself in a Post-Truth World!

Registration is now open for Empowering Yourself in a Post-Truth World, a new Open edX MOOC developed by colleagues from SUNY Albany and SUNY Empire State College who work together as part of the Metaliteracy Learning Collaborative. This six-week Open edX MOOC starts on March 18, 2019, so register today!  The course examines how to address post-truth challenges through the lens of metaliteracy while exploring ways to rebuild communities of trust. The content of the course is informed by the new book published by Tom Mackey and Trudi Jacobson for ALA-Neal Schuman, Metaliterate Learning for the Post-Truth World. The MOOC is supported by a SUNY Innovative Instruction Technology Grant and is hosted by the University at Buffalo, College of Arts and Sciences Continuing Education.

The instructors for the course include Tom Mackey, Trudi Jacobson, Kelsey O’Brien, Tom Palmer, Lisa Stephens, Christine Fena, Allison Hosier, and Nicola Marae Allain. In addition to the instructors, we worked with a team that included Alena Roddick (Instructional Designer), John Hughes (Videographer), David Dickinson (Videographer), and Christine Paige (Project Manager). Thanks to Jay Stockslader, Director of Continuing Education at the University of Buffalo for supporting our MOOC on Open EdX. Check out the promo video below created by Kelsey O’Brien and register now!

Metaliteracy Examined in HigherEdJobs Leadership Publication

HEJ_Logo_2cTrudi Jacobson and Tom Mackey co-authored a feature article entitled Why You Should Fight for Metaliteracy on Your Campus for the HigherEdJobs leadership newsletter. This publication is sent to approximately 40,000 subscribers at the executive level, including presidents, provosts, and deans. The article was written to support all educators interested in applying metaliteracy in a wide range of disciplines and institutional contexts to advance metaliterate learning. As Jacobson and Mackey (2018) argue in this new essay:

Metaliteracy provides a model for thinking and knowing in a social media age that is fraught with misleading and downright false information from a wide range of questionable sources. Metaliterate learners are developed across many academic disciplines through teaching and learning situations that promote self-direction, collaboration, participation, and metacognitive thinking. This approach requires us to work together and innovate, applying the metaliteracy goals and learning objectives, and supporting institutional partnerships among key stakeholders such as faculty, librarians, and instructional designers.

As noted in this essay, collaborative conversations among key stakeholders at the campus level are ideal to advance metaliteracy initiatives. If you have questions about how to get these conversations started or to share innovative programs already in place, feel free to reach out directly to Trudi Jacobson at tjacobson@albany.edu or Tom Mackey at Tom.Mackey@esc.edu.

Poetic Ethnography and Metaliteracy: Empowering Voices in A Hybrid Theater Arts Course

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Metaliterate Learning for the Post-Truth World

Kimmika Williams-Witherspoon, an Associate Professor at Temple University offers the following preview of her chapter: “Poetic Ethnography and Metaliteracy: Empowering Voices in a Hybrid Theater Arts Course’ appearing in the forthcoming book, Metaliterate Learning for the Post-Truth World.

When is a Theater arts course more than a theater arts course? How do we encourage students to “have voice”? In an age when “alternative facts” have become the new norm, how can theater and the theater studies curriculum give students agency to contribute to the discourse? Well… at Temple University, these days, its when faculty consciously use a metaliteracy lens to develop or improve their courses so as to encourage students to not just consume new knowledge but also to produce it and to distribute it through multiple modalities and across multiple platforms.

At Temple University in Philadelphia, the Theater Studies curriculum exemplifies the metacognitive domain of metaliteracy teaching students to effectively consume and produce new information in the form of devised theater productions, displays, press releases, exhibitions, community performances and critiques. One such course that goes a long way to introduce metaliteracy concepts into the theater curriculum is THTR 2008 Poetic Ethnography.

The course, THTR 2008 Poetic Ethnography operates as both ethno-drama and as a theater hybrid that incorporates several tightly structured field site audio and video digital storytelling projects into its 13-week curriculum. These projects encourage students to expand their knowledge base, investigate multiple forms of information gathering methodologies and to develop performative and distributive content across multiple cultural and social platforms.

Through the process of research and new knowledge production, students gain life-long learning skills about how to develop more nuanced, personal narratives that tell a more complete and factual story about communities, individuals and contemporary events. This chapter, then, looks at how Poetic Ethnography teaches students how to develop ethnographic and personal narratives set to poetry about Philadelphia neighborhoods and its people—giving voice to the sometimes voiceless in our communities, while simultaneously learning metaliteracy and metacognitive learning strategies.

Dr. Kimmika L. H. Williams-Witherspoon, Associate Professor

Department of Theater

Temple University

Comments Welcomed on Revised Metaliteracy Goals and Learning Objectives

The original set of four goals and accompanying learning objectives were developed in 2014 by members of the Metaliteracy Learning Collaborative with valuable input by others, as indicated in the Additional Contributors section of the Goals and Learning Objectives page. Over the course of the last several years, there have been significant changes in our information environment and with social media in particular, and in the ways that people interact with them. We felt that it was time to review the goals and learning objectives in depth. What followed were changes both substantive and minor, as well as some reorganization.

We invite you to review and comment on these changes through the Reply feature at the bottom of Goals and Learning Objectives page. We also welcome suggestions. Our goal is to finalize the revision by September 15. Thank you.