Your Name and Title: Dr. Marc Kosciejew
School or Organization Name: University of Malta
Area of the World from Which You Will Present: Malta
Language in Which You Will Present: English
Target Audience(s): Educators, Students, Learners
Short Session Description (one line): Understanding and applying metaliteracy skills are necessary for educators, students, learners, and other individuals navigating today’s complex information environment.
Full Session Description (as long as you would like):
Accessing, assessing, analyzing, and using information, in both the classroom and beyond, often means accessing, assessing, analyzing, and using documents. It is with and through documentation that information is materialized into objects that are tangible and that can consequently be consulted, read, viewed, managed, engaged with, shared, and used in and for a multitude of purposes. As the information landscape becomes increasingly complex and dynamic with new and emerging kinds of multisensory, participatory, and pervasive documentation to produce, share, and use information, the need for metaliteracy skills concurrently grows in importance to help students, learners, and other individuals approach this exciting, overwhelming, and constantly expanding environment.
When individuals engage in metaliterate practices of creating, sharing, and assessing information, they are, in fact, engaging in practices with documents. Pioneered by Thomas P. Mackey and Trudi E. Jacobson, metaliteracy is an emerging field of research and practice exploring the intersections and interconnections between diverse literacies (see for example: Jacobson and Mackey 2013, 2016; Mackey and Jacobson 2011, 2014, 2016, 2019). Yet, while the goals and objectives of metaliteracy (metaliteracy.org) implicitly acknowledge documentation, they do not explicitly emphasize the fundamental roles played by it in helping facilitate and enable various metaliterate learning and practices. This presentation aims to make these roles explicit for today’s learners navigating an increasingly complex information environment.
By foregrounding documentation – specifically documents and their associated practices – within metaliteracy, this presentation argues for the recognition of the fundamental roles played by documents and their associated practices within metaliterate practices and learning. Drawing upon scholarship in documentation and metaliteracy studies, the aim is to help illuminate metaliteracy’s materiality by emphasizing its documentation, or put differently, metaliteracy is not about or dealing with intangible abstractions but instead dealing with tangible objects, namely, documents.
The following discussion is arranged into five main sections. The first section presents a brief overview of metaliteracy to provide a foundation on which to build the following sections. The second section makes specific connections between metaliteracy and documentation to help show how the latter materializes and makes possible the information and practices of the former. The third section introduces a documentary-material literacy framework to metaliteracy to demonstrate documentation’s fundamental roles within metaliteracy. The fourth section begins applying this framework to some of metaliteracy’s goals and objectives to demonstrate how it can be employed in the classroom for teaching students how to be better or more metaliterate learners. The concluding section calls for greater attention to documentation within metaliteracy in addition to other kinds of information practices and literacies.
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