Media Education Lab at AERA 2015 Chicago

The Media Education Lab is coming to Chicago and looking forward to seeing our friends and colleagues at the American Educational Research Association (AERA). 


Yonty Friesem: Media Literacy as Holistic Education Thursday, April 16, 12:00 to 1:30pm, Hyatt, West Tower - Green Level, Crystal B 

With the increasing use of digital media in and out of school (Pew Research, 2014), teachers struggle to incorporate media literacy in their classrooms (De Abreu, 2014). As we look back to the origins of the media literacy field, we can find the solution in the form of holistic education. This paper connects between media literacy and holistic education to foster a humanistic approach. Bringing holistic education practices into media literacy education allows teachers to emphasis the cognitive, affective, physical, cultural, social, and spiritual components of digital media into the 21st century classroom. This theoretical paper calls for further research to explore how digital and media literacy can be used as a holistic pedagogy. 


Julie Coiro: The Challenges of Designing Digital Scaffolds to Support Research-Based Argumentative Writing
Fri, April 17, 10:35am to 12:05pm, Sheraton, Second Level, Huron

The Digital Online Inquiry Tool was designed to scaffold processes used to plan, locate, organize, evaluate, and integrate evidence for and against relevant claims and ultimately craft an argumentation essay. Data suggests the tool and related tasks are flexible enough to fulfill the varied curricular needs of high school language arts and history teachers. Teachers appreciated how the tool illuminated their students’ online inquiry processes as they developed their essay and students agreed that it helped them, in particular, organize their ideas and ponder an issue from different points of view. However, qualitative data indicate many students struggled to clarify perspectives, navigate complex disciplinary texts to locate relevant evidence, and decide what claims or counter claims their evidence supported. Students also had difficulty generating the linguistic structures to weigh conflicting evidence, synthesize their opinions, and evaluate the quality of the claims they encountered in online sources. 

Yonty Friesem, Sue Sabella and Brien Jennings: Flipping the Standards: Collaborative Professional Development in Digital and Media Literacy to Address Common Core State Standards in the Elementary Grades

Fri, April 17, 2:15 to 3:45pm, Sheraton, Fourth Level, Chicago VI&VII

Working with a group of elementary school teachers in a northeastern suburban community, three educators explored how to demonstrate the connections between the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and digital and media literacy in a semester-long professional development. This paper examines the process of collaboration as the authors experienced shifts in their beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors, especially toward the effective use of digital texts through focusing on the Speaking and Listening Standards. As a form of tiered professional development (TPD), each educator came to the same conclusion in different ways. This autoethnographic research opens the door for more exploration of how professional development evolves over time in the context of collaborative work that connects school and university stakeholders. 

Connected Learning in Chicago Public Schools

Fri, April 17, 4:05 to 5:35pm, Hyatt, East Tower - Green Level, Plaza A

Session Type: Symposium

Renee Hobbs, Discussant 


Renee Hobbs, Julie Coiro, Yonty Friesem, Stephanie Viens, Morgan Jaffee: Extending the Digital Literacy Competencies of Teachers

Sat, April 18, 10:35am to 12:05pm, Hyatt, East Tower - Purple Level, Riverside West

Using inquiry pedagogy, constructivist learning theory and leadership theory, we examined the attitudes and behavior of a small group of educators who participated in a week-long professional development program in digital literacy. Evidence from program evaluation and pre- and post-test questionnaires shows that participants expanded their definitions of digital literacy and reflected purposefully on their concerns about the benefits and risks of digital media texts, tools and technologies in schools. Hands-on, minds-on experiences that increase teachers’ comfort with digital tools and technologies and provide opportunities for collaboration and reflective thinking about the impact of digital media may contribute to teacher effectiveness.