We launched Metaliteracy MOOC on September 4 at the University at Albany with colleagues from SUNY Empire State College and the University Libraries. Our opening plenary was facilitated through Blackboard Collaborate and included Tom Mackey, Trudi Jacobson, Tor Loney, Jenna Hecker, Nicola Marae Allain, and our colleagues from the Metaliteracy Learning Collaborative Michele Forte, Kathleen Stone, Mike Daly, and Mark McBride. We were joined in person by three UAlbany students and online by one of our graduate students from Empire State College. The first MOOC Talk was developed in Prezi and provided an overview of key metaliteracy terms, updates on recent metaliteracy activity, and two figures from the Metaliteracy manuscript recently completed by Tom Mackey and Trudi Jacobson for ALA Books. A recording of our first interactive session via Blackboard Collaborate is available at our Topic 1 page at Metaliteracy MOOC. In the spirit of Open SUNY we coordinated shared press releases that have been published at the Empire State College web site and the UAlbany Web site. The live MOOC Talk session was fascinating for us as we facilitated the talk with several presenters, allowing us to look at metaliteracy from multiple perspectives. We were also inspired by the post-MOOC Talk (that we did not record) because it allowed us to talk through the MOOC format itself and it felt very much like a spontaneous seminar about MOOCs. We have also seen an asynchronous conversation unfold via Twitter at #metaliteracy in response to the talk. We look forward to our upcoming MOOC Talks. On September 18 Char Booth will examine “The Metacognitive Dimension of Metaliteracy,” a key aspect of the metaliteracy model.
Metaliteracy has been featured recently in two new publications. A new UNESCO document entitled Media and Information Literacy for Knowledge Societies (2013) provides a brief definition of metaliteracy and makes it central to the conclusion. According to this new publication:
As an umbrella term, it covers many of the other literacies. It also seems to overlap with new literacies such as multiliteracies and global literacy. It is a metaliteracy. It is transversal in its nature and can be seen as an iceberg concept which is much bigger than what it is seen at first sight. Information literacy can be easily called a megaliteracy which is composed of many other skills and literacies (p. 85).
As a comprehensive and unifying metaliteracy, the idea of a megaliteracy is not needed, since the the meta already encompasses this idea. But this is an intriguing way to look at it and certainly addresses the interconnected nature of emerging literacies. Great to see metaliteracy brought into the conversation.
We also note another new publication from Betty Hurley-Dasgupta, Carol Yeager, and Catherine Bliss from SUNY Empire State College about the first MOOC they offered in the SUNY System entitled Creativity and Multicultural Communication. The authors make several references to metaliteracy in their article cMOOC and Global Learning: An Authentic Alternative in The Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks (JALN). According to the authors,
Clearly, we need to scaffold the development of metaliteracy skills for learning through cMOOCs. Some scaffolding could be accomplished by incorporating more self-assessment into the MOOC. For future MOOCs, we plan to incorporate shared rubrics to help participants assess their own metaliteracy skills, (Yeager, et.al, 2013, p. 144).
This is an important point that demonstrates the potential impact of a metaliteracy perspective on the cMOOC learning experience, and how learners could gain new insights and knowledge in these open and collaborative spaces. We definitely need metaliteracy rubrics for MOOCs to enhance the experience for independent and collaborative learners.