Mediated Me: An Introduction to Digital Literacy

Fall 2021 (3 credits)

Co-ordinator: Jessica Chan
Jessica Chan

Course Outline

LANG1004 is an introductory course that helps students explore the impact of digital media texts (such as podcasts, wikis, and social media like YouTube) on academic, professional and social communication practices. The course will enable students to be: critical of current digital communication practices; reflective of their communication and participation through digital media; aware of how digital communication can impact language delivery; and reflective of their English language development. To achieve this, the course guides students in developing basic knowledge of digital literacy theories and practices and to produce their own digital media texts for English communicative purposes. Students will undertake authentic tasks related to their academic and future careers that enables them to achieve the necessary communication skills in a digital world.


Course Intended Learning Outcomes (CILO)

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  1. 1. Describe basic terms, concepts and theories related to digital literacies
  2. 2. Identify possibilities and constraints of communicating through digital media texts
  3. 3. Analyze and evaluate current digital communication practices within academic and professional contexts
  4. 4. Use digital tools, such as video editing, audio creation and editing, and wikis, for English communicative purposes across disciplines
  5. 5. Produce digital artefacts (text, audio and video) in English to communicate ideas for academic and professional purposes


Course Schedule

Week Topic Description of topic ILO
1 Defining digital literacies This lesson will introduce basic communication theories, definitions of ‘literacy’ and ways of meaning‐making. It will also introduce concepts related to the ‘mediated me’. CILO‐1
2 Multi‐literacies and multi‐modality This lesson will introduce how initial definitions of literacies have expanded from traditional “reading and writing” to multi-literacies and introduce basic concepts and theories related to multi‐modality and communication. CILO‐1
3 Multi‐literacies and multi‐modality Expanding from the previous topics, students will begin exploring how digital tools and technology have had an impact on (enhancing or containing) communication. CILO‐1, CILO‐2
4 Meaning‐making through digital media Students will be introduced to strategies for analyzing and evaluating digital media texts. For example, how multi‐modality might strengthen an argument. Examples from current media and across disciplines will be given. CILO‐2, CILO‐3
5 Re‐mixing and
Students will be introduced to how new forms of expression are possible with digital tools, allowing for re‐mixing and mash‐up others’ content. They will also analyze and evaluate social practices of digital remixing. For example, intertextuality, copyright, ethics. CILO‐2, CILO‐3
6 Hyper‐reading and hyper‐writing This lesson will introduce how digital texts calls for new reading and writing strategies. Examples from wikis and blogs will be used. Students will also be introduced to common uses of these tools and be asked to create an artefact with hypertext. CILO‐3, CILO‐4, CILO‐5
7 Online language This lesson will introduce how the English language is commonly used or changes through digital media texts. Students will participate in a form of online communication, analyzing and evaluating the process. CILO‐3, CILO‐4, CILO 5
8 Critical digital literacy This lesson will introduce basic critical digital literacy theories and how digital media texts empower (or disempower) people. Examples from different disciplines will be given. CILO‐3, CILO‐4
9 Online cultures Topics will introduce basic online culture theories and how digital media texts represent (or create) various cultures and sub‐cultures. Students will participate in a form of online communication, analyzing and evaluating how online cultures form. CILO‐3, CILO‐4, CILO 5
10 Digital practices: learning and literacy Topics will introduce basic learning using digital tools, such as social learning and online social network theories. Students will participate in a form of online communication, analyzing and evaluating how digital environments enhance or constrain the communication of knowledge. CILO‐3, CILO‐4, CILO 5
11 Digital practices: collaborative
Topics from previous sessions will be used to illustrate how digital media texts have an impact on collaborative communication. CILO‐3, CILO‐4, CILO 5
12 Digital practices: literacies at work Topics from previous sessions will be reflected upon and students will synthesize what they have learned to develop a basic knowledge of the social and professional impacts of digital literary practice. CILO‐3, CILO‐4, CILO 5
13 Brave new World Topics will cover predictions of how digital literacies might evolve and the impact of digital communication practices may have on higher education and the workplace. CILO‐2, CILO‐3


Assessment Tasks

Assessment task Weighting Description
Quiz x 4 20% Open book online quizzes (MC questions plus 1 long answer) spaced evenly throughout the semester to demonstrate understanding of key concepts and theories.
Group discussion lead 10% Devise a discussion prompt based on concepts and theories learned in the course and facilitate a group discussion for an assigned week.
Discussion participation 10% Active participation in the weekly group to demonstrate online communication competencies and understanding of concepts and theories.
Meme assessment 20% Produce a multimodal meme by combining images with texts for a specific audience and purpose, and write an analysis (800 words) justifying the design of the meme.
Video podcast + rationale 30% +
Produce a video or audio podcast segment (3-4 minutes) on a self-chosen topic related to the Hong Kong community, and write a rationale (1000 words) justifying the design.


How the course is organised

There are two components to this course: online out-of-class work and face-to-face lessons.

Online out-of-class work: Each week, you are required to complete the out-of-class work before coming to the lesson. Out-of-class work may include videos, readings, discussion forum questions, study questions, and prep work. It is important that you complete this work because you will need to refer to it throughout the lesson. A prep poll will also be administered at the beginning of class to check your understanding of the materials.

Face-to-face lesson: You can expect each lesson to follow a format similar to the outline below. (Depending on the lesson goals, there may be one or two activities.)

Introduction Learning objectives are introduced.
Prep poll Students submit a poll response to demonstrate their understanding of the online out-of-class work before the lesson.
Activity 1 – Introduction Activity goals are explained.
Activity 1 – Breakout Students are randomly assigned a group to complete an activity.
Activity 1 – Discussion The entire class reflects on and discusses the outcome of the activity.
Activity 1 – Closure Closing comments on the outcome of the activity are discussed.
Wrap up Wrap up discussion about the learning outcomes of the whole lesson.
Reflection poll Students submit a poll response to reflect on the lesson’s learning objectives.

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