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Four Learners Responses to an Emergent
‘Visual Arts Showcase e-Portfolio’ Meta-Genre
Learner EG1’s homepage (2013) Learner...
2010 - 2012
Action research project with Visual Arts educators at
an independent and government school
2013/09/07 Prepared...
Profile
description
Profile
image
Folders of
digitised
artworks
About button Portfolio
title
Contact
details
Areas of
expe...
Aligned with a national curricular statement module.
Appropriated at school to help learners improve their
‘Management and...
The research questions of my PhD in Media Studies
Question 1.
What are the e-portfolio design
choices that Visual Arts lea...
Defining the e-portfolio design choices by layer.
Prepared by Travis NoakesSeptember 7, 2013
Bateman (2008) proposes an em...
Define 29 learners’ choices in response to a meta-genre?
Enact Genre
Reinforce/
Undercut
Ongoing
use
Observe genre use
Be ...
Design and the Visual Arts Showcase e-portfolio
classroom sub-genre ecology
Learner subject
Exemplary corpora
Guidelines o...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 9
This project adopts a SSMC research framework
(Kress, 1992, 2006, 2010) to understa...
Four case studies
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 10
Learner EG1’s profile image (2013) Learner AH1’s profile image (...
The value of Learner EG1’s e-portfolio design for him
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 11
He identified the value of h...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 12
The e-portfolio’s significance to Learner EG1
‘Who produced it?’
Learner EG1 with ...
Case Study 1. Learner EG1’s homepage
2010 2012
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 13
Learner EG1 adopted a unique design...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 14
2012
Case Study 1. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner EG1
‘I think a sket...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 15
- Many learners struggled with the online concept of ‘ongoing design’ (this explan...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 16
2012
Case Study 1. Learner EG1’s ‘about’ page
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 17
The e-portfolio’s significance to learner AH1
‘Who produced it?’
Learner AH1 with ...
Case Study 2. Learner AH1’s homepage
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 18
2010 2012
If he could, he would have changed ...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 19
Case Study 2. Learner AH1’s ‘about’ page
2012
‘…why would you have a thing that yo...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 20
Case Study 2. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner AH1
2012
‘… the work tha...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 21
The e-portfolio’s significance to Learner CG1
‘Who produced it?’
Learner CG1 with ...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 22
Case Study 3. Learner CG1’s homepage
2011 2012
‘So, you have the three, three port...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 23
Case Study 3. Learner CG1’s ‘about’ page
2012
‘I would say that most, or some of t...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 24
Case Study 3. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner CG1
2012
- Learner CG1 w...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 25
The e-portfolio’s significance to Learner MV1
‘Who produced it?’
Learner MV1 did n...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 26
Case Study 4. Learner MV1’s homepage
2010 2012
‘Ja, I think I probably went onto t...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 27
Case Study 4. Learner MV1’s ‘about’ page
2012
The paucity of e-portfolio content a...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 28
Case Study 4. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner MV1
2012
Learner MV1 was...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 29
Conclusion
This cross-section of case studies highlights how the curricular
compli...
2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 30
The ‘Visual Arts Showcase e-portfolio’ meta-genre has changed and
matured since 20...
THANKS to supporters of my research project
National Research Foundation.
University of Cape Town,
Department of Film and ...
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Four learners responses to e portfolio meta-genre 2013

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This presentation explores the aspects of significance that are reflected in the extent, type and variety of design choices that Visual Arts learners make in designing e-portfolios. These include; attitudes to the disciplines in the school subject, relationships in constructing the e-portfolio and orientation to current and future audiences. A pedagogic reflection suggests that Visual Arts educators include these aspects when teaching e-portfolio curricula. Reflecting on their art, potential collaborators and audiences may help learners make more coherent choices.

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  • This is part of my action research PhD in Media Studies project at two schools: first at an elite, all-boys, independent school in Rondebosch and a less well-resourced, mixed sex, government school in Athlone.
  • Each Carbonmade online portfolio consists of a ‘homepage’, ‘about’ page, and ‘artwork project folder’ pages. As you can see from the respective fields I list on each page, all pages are ensembles constructed out of a different choices in; writing, layout, still image and colour modal resources. Also, when the user clicks through a portfolio, there can be a moving image mode effect.
  • Learners struggle to present their end-of-year work at its best, and the electronic learning portfolio syllabus aimed to help them prepare for this, as well as post-school realities.
  • The first two questions speak to exploring the choices that learners make and I am using New Media Studies and Multimodal theory to explain these.
  • To answer the first question, I use the Genre and Multimodality (GeM) framework proposed by Bateman. This can be used to decompose any multimodal document into six layers. In my conference paper I focus on the ‘layout’, content’ and ‘rhetoric’ choices of a cross-section of four independent learners. The layout structure includes the appearance of communicative elements on a page and their hierarchical interrelationships; the content structure features the information to be communicated and the rhetorical structure layer describes the rhetorical relationships between content elements. http://multimodalityglossary.wordpress.com
  • These learners were selected from seventeen at the independent school due to showing a cross-section of choices. Learner EG1 closely reproduced the genre. The contrasting choices of learners AH1, CG1 and MV1 are described in their varying approaches to elaborating, replacing and undercutting the genre.
  • Genre is that shaping of text which reflects and is brought into existence as a result of the social relations of the participants in the making (writing/speaking) and in the use (reading/hearing and other use) of a text. Kress on ‘Genre and the Changing Contexts for English Language Arts’ (1999), page 467
  • As you can see from the blurred texts, learner AH1 added his school name and contact details.
  • Transcript of "Four learners responses to e portfolio meta-genre 2013"

    1. 1. Four Learners Responses to an Emergent ‘Visual Arts Showcase e-Portfolio’ Meta-Genre Learner EG1’s homepage (2013) Learner AH1’s homepage (2013) Learner CG1’s homepage (2013) Learner MV1’s homepage (2013)
    2. 2. 2010 - 2012 Action research project with Visual Arts educators at an independent and government school 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 2
    3. 3. Profile description Profile image Folders of digitised artworks About button Portfolio title Contact details Areas of expertise SkillsFooter Artist. Date. Folder Name, Description Artwork Title Description Tags Client tags 1 ‘Home’ page template 3 ‘Artwork project folder’ page template 2 ‘About’ page template (artist’s profile) Carbonmade Artist. Date. Availability for freelance graphic Carbonmade portfolio’s page types 4 ‘Search page results’ template Work button Creative’s name Portfolio title Carbonmade banner logo Footer Artist. Date. Footer Artist. Date. Prepared by Travis Noakes2013/09/07 3
    4. 4. Aligned with a national curricular statement module. Appropriated at school to help learners improve their ‘Management and Presentation’ skills. • Online portfolio syllabus taught for two weeks each year; • Ultimate aims are matric-exhibition preparation and preparing for post-school reality. Screenshot of learner MH’s Carbonmade ‘homepage’, November, 2010 Screenshot of learner MH’s Carbonmade ‘homepage’, December, 2011 Screenshot of learner MH’s Carbonmade ‘homepage’, May, 2012 Prepared by Travis Noakes2013/09/07 4
    5. 5. The research questions of my PhD in Media Studies Question 1. What are the e-portfolio design choices that Visual Arts learners made? Question 2. How do e-portfolio design choices and sub-genre practices relate to the learner relationships and the possibilities and constraints of their circumstances? 5 For research updates, go to travisnoakes.co.za or follow @travisnoakes on Twitter Prepared by Travis Noakes
    6. 6. Defining the e-portfolio design choices by layer. Prepared by Travis NoakesSeptember 7, 2013 Bateman (2008) proposes an empirical approach to multimodal document analysis showing how it(s design) ‘functions’ and what it does in its ‘own terms’. The GeM framework decomposes multimodal documents into six key structures: •The ‘navigation’, ‘linguistic’ and ‘genre’ structures of the webpages are simple as these are largely defined by the rules of the online portfolio software page templates; •The ‘layout’, ‘content’ and ‘rhetoric’ structures feature the most variation. In my ‘Four Learners Responses to an Emergent ‘Visual Arts Showcase e-Portfolio’ Meta-Genre’ conference paper I focus on differences in a cross- section of learners’ design choices in ‘layout’, ‘content’ and ‘rhetoric’ structures. 6
    7. 7. Define 29 learners’ choices in response to a meta-genre? Enact Genre Reinforce/ Undercut Ongoing use Observe genre use Be influenced by genre use Identify a situation Identify a change of situation Identify genre rules Reproduce genre Elaborate genre Replace with different genre Undercut genre Select genre Characterization of the cyclic process of genre change according to Yoshioka and Herman (2000); sourced from Bateman (2008: 191). 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 7
    8. 8. Design and the Visual Arts Showcase e-portfolio classroom sub-genre ecology Learner subject Exemplary corpora Guidelines on choices that constitute a ‘Visual Arts e-portfolio showcase’ meta-genre reproductionextendreplaceundercut Multimodal design choice creates design syntagms and pages Choice matches Choice elaborates Choice substitutes Choice is absent or is opposing Other corpora? Non-corpora? Educator and researcher Several choices constitute a webpage ‘text’ Choice helps constitute a home-, about- or artwork project folder page http://www.travisnoakes.co.za/p/online-portfolio-lessons.html) All webpage types contribute to creating the Visual Arts showcase e-portfolio sub-genre 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 8 Visual Arts Showcase e-portfolio classroom sub-genre References the School Visual Arts genre and its sub-genres ‘Online Portfolio Exhibition’ super-genre Reference the ‘Traditional Portfolio Exhibition’ antecedent genre and its sub-genres ‘Homepage’ ,‘About’ and ‘Artwork’ webpage sub-genres Reference related sub-genres; i.e. ‘CV’, ‘Exhibition history’
    9. 9. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 9 This project adopts a SSMC research framework (Kress, 1992, 2006, 2010) to understand aspects of significance to the learner: •‘Who produced it?’ •‘For whom was it produced?’ •‘In what context and under what constraints was it produced?’ (Kress, 2000) Social Semiotic Theory of Multimodal Communication (SSMC) research framework The meaning of learners choices cannot be explained by the ‘constituency’ approach commonly used in Linguistics, where learners create meaning from the “bottom up” through specific modal choices.
    10. 10. Four case studies 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 10 Learner EG1’s profile image (2013) Learner AH1’s profile image (2013) Learner CG1’s s profile image (2013) Learner MV1’s s search image (2013)
    11. 11. The value of Learner EG1’s e-portfolio design for him 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 11 He identified the value of his e-portfolio as adding another dimension to his art in supporting; sharing with audiences, organizing artworks for display (Int2 EG1, 7 November, 2012, R124, R129) while also revealing his artistic identity and the evolution of his artistic creativity at school (Int1 EG1, 15 November, 2012, R50, R51, R53). He intended to use his e-portfolio as a drawing archive post-school: He enjoyed drawing and contrasted his e-portfolio focus on drawing to a friend, learner AK1, who had foregrounded photography; ‘But he had always been focused on his photography and was very passionate about it. Whereas I was more passionate about the work that we had done and, like, presenting the work that I enjoy.’ (Int1 EG1, 15 November, 2012, R79).
    12. 12. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 12 The e-portfolio’s significance to Learner EG1 ‘Who produced it?’ Learner EG1 with feedback from his educator and some from parents, peers and friends. ‘For whom was it produced?’ Learner EG1 produced it to reflect his emergent identity as a fine artist to his audiences. ‘In what context was it produced?’ Although Learner EG1 had successfully applied in matric for admission to the Medical School of the University of Cape Town, his admission could be withdrawn if he failed to continue achieving a high subject average. ‘Under what constraints was it produced?’ Learner EG1 ‘flipped the classroom’ to work at home and overcome slow Carbonmade use at school. Did not publish extra-mural photography and many extra-mural artworks.
    13. 13. Case Study 1. Learner EG1’s homepage 2010 2012 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 13 Learner EG1 adopted a unique design approach that differed from all his classmates in serving as a metaphor for the ‘clean type of gallery look’ he likes (Int1 EG1, 15 November, 2012, R66). He wanted it to look simple, elegant and not to distract from the actual works (Int2 EG1, 7 November, 2012, R113). He extended the Visual Arts showcase e-portfolio sub-genre through consistent application of this metaphor.
    14. 14. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 14 2012 Case Study 1. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner EG1 ‘I think a sketchbook almost forms the strongest basis of our art, especially at <school name>. Even above other schools, we use sketchbooks so much, where at other schools might be doing bigger projects at a larger scale, where we always have a sketchbook that we are updating every week or every two weeks.’ (Int2 EG1, 7 November, 2012, R126).
    15. 15. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 15 - Many learners struggled with the online concept of ‘ongoing design’ (this explanation was written in 2011, while his ‘about’ page featured the current 2012 revision)
    16. 16. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 16 2012 Case Study 1. Learner EG1’s ‘about’ page
    17. 17. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 17 The e-portfolio’s significance to learner AH1 ‘Who produced it?’ Learner AH1 with feedback from his educator and some from parents and peers. ‘For whom was it produced?’ He created a ‘… more mature rendition’ (Int2 AH1, 23 November 2012, R47) that could merit a ‘passing grade’. ‘In what context was it produced?’ ‘Obviously it can be quite useful in terms of showing, like if I am going into advertising say, I can reference this to interviewers to see my own art portfolio. Instead of lugging a whole handheld thing in, which is nice.’ (R48, R49). Learner AH1 said that he would update his Carbonmade portfolio with new work from his advertising projects in Business Science. ‘Under what constraints was it produced?’ Learner AH1 ‘flipped the classroom’ to work at home. He did not publish extra- mural photography and many extra-mural artworks.
    18. 18. Case Study 2. Learner AH1’s homepage 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 18 2010 2012 If he could, he would have changed the whole Visual Arts curriculum; ‘I don't like being given, like 'Protest art' and 'Search for African Art in the 50's and 60's.' That sort of stuff does not interest me. What interests me is more of like.. not fictional stuff. Like characters from video games or, or like nice tribal designs and more, er, more imaginative, er, imaginatory pictures.’ (Int1 AH1, 2 November 2012; R5).
    19. 19. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 19 Case Study 2. Learner AH1’s ‘about’ page 2012 ‘…why would you have a thing that you could share your stuff with the world, if people can't contact you and be like this and you can't get feedback from it. Otherwise, it just sits there.’ (Int1 AH1, 2 November 2012, R22).
    20. 20. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 20 Case Study 2. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner AH1 2012 ‘… the work that is on there is mostly work that has been set and we don't really get a choice as to what we do at (school name). It is more of a curriculum that is set and you have to do this, this and this... these tasks in order to pass. I mean ... I guess I could have put up some of my stuff that I have been doing personally, but then again... I am not too sure that I am very self-conscious about my art as well. So, I am not too sure that it is good enough to put up... and... if it will be judged in a negative or a positive way.’ (Int1 AH1, 2 November 2012, R9).
    21. 21. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 21 The e-portfolio’s significance to Learner CG1 ‘Who produced it?’ Learner CG1 with feedback from his educator and some from parents and peers. ‘For whom was it produced?’ Learner CG1 produced it for an assessment audience only. ‘In what context was it produced?’ Boarding house ‘Under what constraints was it produced?’ Learner could not upload videos to free version of Carbonmade, nor customise his template to the extent he wanted. Published extra-mural photography and many extra-mural artworks.
    22. 22. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 22 Case Study 3. Learner CG1’s homepage 2011 2012 ‘So, you have the three, three portrait faces. So that gave quite a cool effect and also... I don't know, Mr Rupert said that he would prefer if it's like that and I am not going to go against what he says, because I want marks...’ (Int CG1, 6 November 2012, R32).
    23. 23. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 23 Case Study 3. Learner CG1’s ‘about’ page 2012 ‘I would say that most, or some of the artwork does express my interests and if you look at my 'about page' there, there is a percentage of what is me... like what my interests are. And if you can what their interests are, you can see what they are like…’ (Int1 CG1, 6 November 2012, R45).
    24. 24. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 24 Case Study 3. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner CG1 2012 - Learner CG1 was keen to show the full range of his creative production and extended the sub-genre by adding links to his videography and boarding house blog sites. However, he also did not pay sufficient attention to detail and this resulted in multimodal disjuncture on some pages.
    25. 25. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 25 The e-portfolio’s significance to Learner MV1 ‘Who produced it?’ Learner MV1 did not involve his parents, peers or others. ‘For whom was it produced?’ Learner MV1 produced it for marks from his educator. ‘In what context was it produced?’ Learner MV1 only did work in class that was marked in the lesson. ‘Under what constraints was it produced?’ ‘I don't actually have a passion for art. I never really enjoyed doing art. I suppose I don't get enough satisfaction out of doing it, because I don't even particularly enjoy my own work, I suppose. You know with Mathematics, I can see that I have done something correctly or I have done it right and it gives me a sense of achievement. Whereas art, I do it, and I still feel it is not good. It is not nice, and I don't enjoy it. So, and I don't really enjoy other people's work that much either…’ (Int1 MV1, 3 November 2012, R29).
    26. 26. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 26 Case Study 4. Learner MV1’s homepage 2010 2012 ‘Ja, I think I probably went onto the website and... ja, I went onto the website to update it and then I created the folder. And I didn't know what to call it, firstly. And then I did not have much work to put into it. So, I just sort of closed it. (laughs) I did not... I don't know how to work it that well. I wasn't trying, er, I didn't try that hard to get it to work, so ja.’ (Int2 MV1, 7 November 2012, R29).
    27. 27. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 27 Case Study 4. Learner MV1’s ‘about’ page 2012 The paucity of e-portfolio content and customisation reflected ‘…laziness, more than anything else. It wasn't really me not wanting to exhibit my work, it was just,... ja.’ (Int2 MV1, 7 November 2012, R97).
    28. 28. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 28 Case Study 4. An ‘artwork project folder’ page by Learner MV1 2012 Learner MV1 was also ‘… not really sure what went, what goes into categories. Because, you know, he (Mr Rupert) wanted something like ‘Exploration of Colour’. So, I wasn't sure about what goes into which category, and that sort of thing... I am also not generally very good with like just management on the Internet. I am not very good with computers.’ (Int2 MV1, 3 November 2012, R15).
    29. 29. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 29 Conclusion This cross-section of case studies highlights how the curricular compliance and coherence of e-portfolio design choices by learners does reflect the significance that the e-portfolio holds for them and their corresponding levels of interest and attention. In particular, the aspects of; who was involved in the production of an e-portfolio, its current and future audiences and the relationship of the learner to the Visual Arts subject are strongly reflected.
    30. 30. 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes 30 The ‘Visual Arts Showcase e-portfolio’ meta-genre has changed and matured since 2010 to become one that assists learners by providing in- depth guidance on each design choice. This approach resonates with the ‘constituency’ approach of Linguistics, where learners create meaning from the “bottom up” through specific modal choices. Although this proved successful in encouraging compliance for particular choices, it is unlikely to help learners in appreciating how different combinations of choices can be used to create successful examples within the ‘Visual Arts Showcase e- portfolio’ sub-genre. To address this, Visual Arts educators should encourage learners to think about the cultural and social significance that the e-portfolio may have to them; at their school, in their professional life and in hobbies, the relevant curricular and extra-mural disciplines they want to feature, who they want to involve in its development and their orientation to potential audiences. In addition to supporting coherence, this should also give more freedom to learners to develop their emergent identities and voice. Pedagogical Review
    31. 31. THANKS to supporters of my research project National Research Foundation. University of Cape Town, Department of Film and Media Studies. Dr Marion Walton & Digimobs SA & SAME research group colleagues Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Department of Informatics and Design. Prof Johannes Cronje & TERPS MA & PhD Colleagues 2013/09/07 Prepared by Travis Noakes Video screengrabs from John Salt of 31
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