setting the context
Conversations about multimodality in education are an ongoing topic of discussion. Research and scholarship have talked about the benefits (and even the need) to embrace multimodal design and texts in Language Arts and L2 classrooms over the years. However, practitioners are still at odds with using multimodality in their own teaching for a myriad of reasons: sometimes it's fear, lack of awareness, or sheer apathy. Whatever the reason, one cannot deny that multimodal texts are here to stay in multiple forms.
in this episode
The #3OA sit together once again to engage in their unfiltered conversation about the topic. This time (and surely not the last), they have invited a special guest who, in his own words, proved to be "obnoxious enough" to give the #3OA a run for their money: New/multimodal literacies scholar Dr. Bill Kist. Dr Kist, a recognized scholar in our field, joined a lively conversation to discuss how to engage (and even how not to engage) with multimodal literacies in our classrooms.
Our conversation provided some insights about why some practitioners may not be on board with the idea (while not indicting them for such moves). We also talked out the "learning curves" that we must all engage to understand multimodal literacies from an adolescent perspective (as danah boyd seemed to remind us), the need for "baby steps" and "familiarity" when engaging with multimodal tools and practices, and overall, the importance of awareness and quality professional development for teachers to make the best and most informed decisions that ultimately benefit their students and themselves.
what (and who) is the #OAC?
The OAC (Obnoxious Academics Consortium) is the brainchild of literacy scholars Drs. Peggy Semingson (UT-Arlington), W. Ian O'Byrne (College of Charleston), and Raúl A. Mora (UPB-Medellín). Initially chartered as #3OA, it has grown as we have found that we are not the only Obnoxious Academics and there are more who have joined us. At present, Drs. Leigh Hall (UNC-Chapel Hill) William Kist (Kent State University), and Shelbie Witte (Oklahoma State University) have joined the consortium, and we may expect more numbers coming soon!