Digital Writing (Undergrad)

This class was offered in Spring 2011, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, and Spring 2016. The materials below are from the most recent iteration.

Syllabus

EMAC 4325: Digital Writing

Spring 2016

These descriptions and timelines are subject to change at the discretion of the Instructor.

Course Information

Class No. 28345
Meets: W 10:00 am – 12:45 pm
Location: ATC 2.918
Credit Hours: 3

Contact Information

Instructor: Kim Knight
Email (preferred method of contact): kim.knight@utdallas.edu
Phone: 972-883-4346 (no voicemail please)

Office Hours:

  • Drop In (no appointment necessary) : Mondays, 6:00pm – 6:30pm; Wednesdays 1:00pm – 1:30pm.
  • Schedule appointments via http://purplekimchi.youcanbook.me
    • be sure to read the Intro section before sending your request

Contact policies:

  • I generally respond to email M-F within 24 hours.
    • If I do not respond within that time frame, check my email address and re-send it.
  • Use official UTD email only.
  • I will not respond to
    • Email messages that request information found on the syllabus or assignment sheets.
    • Twitter direct messages.

Kim’s website: http://kimknight.com
Course wiki: digitaltextuality.pbworks.com
Twitter tag: #digitaltext
Twitter archive: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1yMVC7iOBp-8w6bjX76IYu9X_jJuJ3fSYABh9fT1ijnk/edit?usp=sharing

Course Description

If we drill down far enough into any form of digital “writing,” we arrive at the level of binary code: 1s and 0s. The same goes for digital images, sound files, animations, videos, etc. This material commonality draws our attention to the fact that any digital object has multiple layers – from the surface representation to the source code, down to those 1s and 0s. In addition to this kind of fundamental multi-mediality, it is very rare to encounter a digital text that is composed on the surface of only one type of media object. In other words, in digital writing, words almost always co-exist with images, links, sound, and video, all built atop a foundation of code. This course takes these types of multi-mediality as its starting point and asks students to reconceive “digital writing” as a more broad form of textuality that can occur in multiple media formats and that explores the unique affordances of different kinds of text objects. 

Through this production-intensive course, students will explore the theoretical and material connections between analog and digital textuality, centered on text, image, sound, and moving image. Students will apply their theoretical understanding of digital textuality to the production of a portfolio, composed of four separate digital media objects and a short paper, each of which foregrounds certain modes of making meaning.  

Prerequisite: RHET 1302.

Course Goals

In this course, students will:
•    Become familiar with theoretical and material connections between analog and digital forms of text, image, sound, and moving image.
•    Investigate the social and cultural implications of new forms of text, image, sound, and moving image.
•    Investigate a variety of tools of digital production and utilize these tools to communicate ideas.
•    Explore new models of digital production, including short forms and collaboration.
•    Engage in processes of feedback and revision to improve their work.

Image based sllabus

Visual Map of Digital Writing

Required Textbooks and Materials

  • McCloud, Scott. Understanding Comics. ISBN-10: 006097625X
  • Various chapters and essays, available online or through course reserve.

The username for protected downloads on kimknight.com is “” and the password is “”. 

You will also need the following: a UTD email account (that you check frequently), a public Twitter account, and a PBWiki account.

Course Policies

Attendance:

Some of the most valuable take-away from this course will come out of our class discussions.  Your participation is necessary for our success. It is important that you come to every class prepared and on time. To be “prepared” means that you have read the reading, developed and considered questions, and are prepared to discuss it in class.  Bring questions, comments, observations, disagreements, examples, etc.

Because your presence in class is important, more than one absence (i.e. missing more than 1 week of class) will negatively affect your participation grade. In most cases, more than four absences (i.e. missing more than 1 month of class) will result in a failing participation grade. Missing more than 8 classes (more than 2 months in class) will result in a failing course grade. There is no distinction between excused and unexcused absences. Use that one freebie wisely. If you need to miss class for religious reasons, please speak to me ahead of time. Absences for religious purposes do not count against the permitted number (as long as prior notification is given).

Lateness is also unacceptable; if you arrive more than thirty minutes late to class you will be marked as absent. If you leave more than 30 minutes early, you will be marked absent. In addition, please try to be as fully present and engaged as possible – silence cell phones, don’t send or receive texts or emails, etc.  Excessive distraction may be counted as an absence.

Coming to class without the necessary prep work (bringing photos, sound clips, etc.) will count as one half an absence.

Inclement Weather:

In the event of inclement weather, all coursework is still due online by the posted times. Students are responsible for checking their email for instructions regarding activities that may be scheduled during the regular class meeting time.

Accommodation:

If you have a disability that requires accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment Act -2008(ADAAA), please present your letter of accommodations from the Office of Student AccessAbility and meet with me as soon as possible so that I can support your success in an informed manner. If you would like to know more about the University of Texas at Dallas, Office of Student AccessAbility, please contact the office at 972-883-6104 or email: studentaccessability@utdallas.edu.  Their office is located in the Student Service Building (SSB), suite 3.200.

Online Due Dates:

First versions of media objects are due before class begins. All other online assignments are due by 11:59pm on the date listed, unless otherwise noted.

Late work:

You should make a concerted effort to turn in all work on-time, in the format outlined on the assignment sheets. Work submitted in formats other than that listed on the assignment sheet will not be accepted.

  • Reading Responses: Weekly reading responses will not be accepted late.
  • In class presentations: Work associated with in-class presentations will not be accepted late. This includes wiki pages for tool reviews.
  • Media objects: Each instance of late versions of written/image/video/acoustic work will result in a loss of 1/3 of a grade on the final portfolio. If you are not in class for the workshop, your work will be considered late.
  • Final Portfolio: Final portfolios will be marked down one letter grade for each day (or fraction thereof) that they are late.

It is your responsibility to complete your work early enough to allow time for any technical difficulties. Work that is turned in late due to technical difficulties is subject to late penalties.

Academic Honesty:

From the UT-D Handbook of Operating Procedures: “The university expects from its students a high level of responsibility with respect to academic honesty. Because the value of an academic degree depends on the absolute integrity of the work done by the student for that degree, it is imperative that a student maintain a high standard of individual honor in his or her scholastic work. The dean may initiate disciplinary proceedings under subchapter C against a student accused of scholastic dishonesty upon complaint by a faculty member or a student.” (http://www.utdallas.edu/dept/graddean/gsPolDishonesty.htm)

Plagiarism will be reported to the Dean of Students. Possible disciplinary action by the university may include failing the assignment, failing the course, expulsion, etc. If you have any questions regarding the proper use of outside sources or the distinction between sampling and plagiarism, I encourage you to meet with me.

Online identity:

This class asks students to participate in publicly accessible blogs and other forms of public writing. Writing in public has several advantages for student learning. It creates a closer analogue to offline environments, and allows for the creation of writing that is designed to be shared with an external audience, instead of just an instructor. It also allows students to learn from each other. However, some students may have legitimate privacy concerns about participating in publicly accessible assignments. These students may choose to participate in public assignments under a pseudonym, or assumed name. If you wish to request this accommodation for any reason, please contact me immediately.

The Classroom Community and Your Well-being:

Our many discussions and online assignments will require vigilance to ensure that we are always preserving an atmosphere of mutual respect in which everyone is welcome to learn. Disagreements may arise and consensus may not be possible.  We can, however, respect each person’s right to express an opinion and right to have the opportunity to learn. Name calling, harassment, or menacing behavior will not be tolerated.

Title IX makes it clear that violence and harassment based on sex and gender are Civil Rights offenses subject to the same kinds of accountability and the same kinds of support applied to offenses against other protected categories such as race, national origin, etc. All UT Dallas Faculty and Staff are considered mandatory reporters, and as such are obligated to report any suspicion of assault or harassment to the University’s Title IX office. Physical and mental health care professionals and pastoral counselors (including those who act in that role under the supervision of these individuals), are prohibited by confidentiality laws from reporting any information about an incident to anyone, in any way that identifies the victim, without the victim’s permission. Thus, students may discuss an incident with a counselor in the Student Counseling Center, the Women’s Center, a health care provider in the Student Health Center, the clergyperson of the student’s choice, or an off-campus resource (i.e. rape crisis center, doctor, psychologist, etc.) without concern that the incident will be reported to the Title IX Coordinator.

If you or someone you know has been harassed or assaulted, you can find the appropriate resources here:

  • Confidential reporting
    • UT Dallas Student Counseling Center (Individual and group counseling available.)
      • During business hours: 972-883-2575
      • After hours: 972-UTD-TALK (972-883-8255)
    • 24 hours: Dallas Area Rape Crisis Center: 972-641-RAPE (972-641-7273)
    • 24 hours, Collin Co residents: Turning Point: 800-886-RAPE (800-886-7273)
    • UTD Galerstein Women’s Center: 972-883-6555
    • UT Dallas Student Health Center (health care providers only): 972-883-2747
  • Non-confidential reporting that will launch an investigation
    • UT Dallas Police: 911, or 972-883-2222
    • UT Dallas Title IX office: 972-883-2292
    • UT Dallas Dean of Students: 972-883-6391
  • STD Testing
    • UTD Student Health Center: 972-883-2747
  • Education and Prevention
    • UTD Student Health Center: 972-883-2747
    • UTD Galerstein Women’s Center: 972-883-6555
    • UTD Student Wellness Center: 972-883-4275
    • UTD Residential Life: 972-883-5361

University Policies: Please visit http://go.utdallas.edu/syllabus-policies for the University’s policies regarding all courses.

Course Requirements and Grading Policy



Grading Scale:

A Range: Excellent B Range: Good C Range: Fair D Range: Needs Improvement F Range: Failing
All work is thought-provoking
and well-executed.
Most work is thought-provoking
and well-executed.
Most work is
well-executed.
Work is often neither
thought-provoking
nor well-executed.
Work does not meet college standards.
A, A- B+, B, B- C+, C, C- D+, D, D- F

Assignments:


Participation – 50%

Participation includes participation in discussion, both in class and online (Twitter discussion and wiki contributions), attendance, quizzes, class presentations, and office hours meetings.

In order for participation to be meaningful, it has to happen on time. As such, reading responses and the work surrounding in-class presentations will not be accepted late.


Portfolio – 50%

Each student will produce a multimedia portfolio in which the same idea/story/argument is made in different media formats.  The portfolio will be composed of four media object – text, image, sound and moving image – and one short research paper.  Each media object will be completed as a first version at various due dates throughout the semester.  First versions will receive peer and instructor feedback and will be revised for the final portfolio.

General Requirements:

This class involves a lot of theoretical reading. My hope is that you will apply the ideas from that reading to your offline and online experiences.  You will be most successful in this class if you are able to have an open mind and take a critical approach to our topics. Please note that being “critical” does not necessarily mean being negative, but it does mean that you are willing to question assumptions and explore the implications of the seemingly mundane and minute aspects of contemporary media culture. Openness to experimentation and play and a willingness to try and fail are critical to the study of emerging media.  In short, in this class we will be enacting some of the very changes we are studying – collaborative learning, alternative models of scholarship, etc.

 Schedule

EMAC 4325 Academic Calendar

Spring 2016

Since we only meet once per week, that means we do twice as much reading and homework for that one meeting. Plan accordingly.

Unit 1: Introduction

January 13: Introduction

  • Syllabus overview
  • Reading Response assignment criteria

January 20: Semiotics

  • Before Class
    • Reading
      • Saussure, “The Nature of the Linguistic Sign” from Course in General Linguistics
        • http://faculty.smu.edu/nschwart/seminar/Saussure.htm
    • Take online syllabus quiz
    • Register for Twitter.
    • Register for PBWorks and request access to the course wiki.
    • Bring one or more magazines that you have lying around. If you have zero magazines, don’t go out and buy one.
  • In Class
    • Tool Review overview & date assignment

January 27: Narrative Across Media

  • Before Class
    • Read McCloud, Understanding Comics, pages 170 – 182
    • Read Ryan, Marie-Laure, “Introduction” from Narrative Across Media
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/ryan-narrativeacrossmedia-intro.pdf
  • In Class
    • Portfolio assignment overview

Unit 2: Text

Feb 3: Text

  • Before Class
    • Read Lethem, “The Ecstasy of Influence”
      • http://harpers.org/archive/2007/02/the-ecstasy-of-influence/
    • Read Barthes, “Death of the Author”
      • http://evans-experientialism.freewebspace.com/barthes06.htm
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

Feb 10: Text

  • Before Class
    •  Read Paul, “The Database as System and Cultural Form” from Database Aesthetics (15 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/vesna-databaseaesthetics.pdf
    • Read Stefans, “Language as Gameplay” at electronic book review (15 pps)
      • http://www.electronicbookreview.com/thread/electropoetics/gameplay
    • Browse Electronic Literature Collection, Volume II
      • http://collection.eliterature.org/2/
      • identify one to discuss in class. Post link to the homework section on the wiki.
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

Feb 17: Portfolio Workshop – Text Object

  • Before Class
    • Text object, version 1 due
  • In Class
    • Review Workshop

Unit 3: Still Image

Feb 24: Still Image

  • Before Class
    • Read McCloud, Understanding Comics
    • Bring your favorite comic book or graphic novel
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

Mar 2: Still Image

  • Before Class
    • Read Gaviria, “When is Information Visualization Art? Determining the Critical Criteria” in Leonardo Vol. 41, No. 5, pp. 479–482, 2008  (use library database to access) (5 pps)
      • http://www.jstor.org/stable/20206665
    • Read Hochman and Shwartz, “Visualizing Instagram: Tracing Cultural Visual Rhythms” from Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence Technical Report WS-12-03: Social Media Visualization (4 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/hochman-schwartz-visualizinginstagram.pdf
    • Read Cruz & Meyer, “Creation and Control in the Photographic Process: iPhones and the emerging fifth moment of photography” from Photographies. (16 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/cruz-meyer-creationcontrolphotographicprocess.pdf
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

Mar 9: Portfolio Workshop – Image Object

  • Before Class
    • Still image object, version 1 due
  • In Class
    • Review Workshop

Mar 16: Spring Break, no class meeting

Unit 4: Sound

Mar 23: Sound

  • Before Class
    • Read Chion, trans Brewster, “Quiet Revolution…and Rigid Stagnation” from October (12 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/chion-quietrevolutionrigidstagnation.pdf
    • Read Waksman, “California Noise: Tinkering with Hardcore and Heavy Metal in Southern California” in Social Studies of Science (28 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/waksman-californianoise.pdf
    • Listen to Eddie Van Halen, Eruption Guitar Solo
      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_lwocmL9dQ
    • Listen to Raymond Scott – Portifino
      • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dy77ioKI4lQ
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

March 30: Sound

  • Before Class
    • Read Sobchack, “When the Ear Dreams: Dolby Digital and the Imagination of Sound” in Film Studies Quarterly (13 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/sobchack-whentheeardreams.pdf
    • Read Behrendt “Playing the iPhone” In: Snickars, Pelle and Vonderau, Patrick, eds. Moving Data: The iPhone and the Future of Media. (9 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/behrendt-playingtheiphone.pdf
    • Read Dialtones: A Telesymphony
      • Levin, et al, “Dialtones (A Telesymphony): Final Report” essay (12+ pps + video)
        • http://kimknight.com/readings/levin-etal-dialtones-finalreport.pdf
      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=g1G-YesiBB8#!
    • Listen / browse Sonic Memorial Project
      • http://www.sonicmemorial.org/sonic/public/index.html
    • Listen / browse Daniel & Loyer, “Public Secrets”
      • http://collection.eliterature.org/2/works/daniel_public_secrets.html
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

April 6: Portfolio Workshop – Sound Object

  • Before Class
    • Sound object, version 1 due
  • In Class
    • Review Workshop

Unit 5: Moving Image

April 13: Moving Image

  • Before Class
    • Read Eisenstein, “A Dialectic Approach to Film Form” (16 pps)
      • http://interactive2.usc.edu/blog-old/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/film_form.pdf
    • Read Hilderbrand, “Grainy Days and Mondays: Superstar and Bootleg Aesthetics” from Camera Obscura 19.3 2004 (36 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/hilderbrand-grainydaysandmondays.pdf
    • Watch Haynes, “Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story” (trigger warning: eating disorder and body image issues)
      • http://youtu.be/UobR9pvRJRE
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

April 20: Moving Image

  • Before Class
    • Read Muller, “Where Quality Matters: Discourses on the Art of Making a YouTube Video” from The YouTube Reader (13 pps)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/muller-wherequalitymatters.pdf
    • Read Horwatt, “A Taxonomy of Digital Video Remixing: Contemporary Found Footage Practice on the Internet” from Cultural Borrowings, ed. Iain Robert Smith (16 pps + videos)
      • http://kimknight.com/readings/smith-ed-culturalborrowings.pdf
    • Watch Recycled Cinema Playlist
      • http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=D52BD242C8855525
      • (watch 3 – 5 selections of your choice)
  • In Class
    • Tool Reviews

April 27: Portfolio Workshop – Moving Image Object

  • Before class
    • Moving image object, version 1 due
  • In Class
    • Review workshop

Final Exam period TBD

  • Portfolio due
  • 5 minutes presentations

Assignments

Participation Expectations

EMAC 4325: Digital Writing
Fall 2016
Participation Expectations

Purpose:

  • To involve students in active processes of learning.

Overview:

Forget the model of education you see in the movies where a brilliant professor lectures from a podium and students scribble away furiously in their notebooks. Research evidence overwhelmingly suggests that students learn better and retain more information when they are actively involved in the process of learning.

My classroom philosophy is that I am a coach, there to guide you through these active processes. I very seldom lecture and most of our class meetings will involve whole class discussion. And this will lead to some of the most valuable take-away from this course, in class and online. However, this means that your participation is necessary for our success. It is important that you participate in every class meeting and that you share resources between classes.

Your participation grade includes in-class discussion, sharing resources via twitter, reading responses, attendance, in-class quizzes, and office hours visits.

The Requirements:

  • Do the reading. Take notes. Post responses that include the entire reading assignment. Come to class prepared to discuss key ideas, vocabulary, questions, disagreements, examples, etc.
  • Be in class. More than one absence will affect your grade, and in most cases, four or more absences will result in a failing grade.
  • Arrive on time and stay for the duration of the class session. If you arrive more than 30 minutes late, you will be marked as absent. Leaving more than 30 minutes early also counts as an absence.
  • Pay attention. Silence cell phones. Don’t send or receive texts or emails. Stay off of Facebook unless it is part of an in-class activity. Use workshop time to test new tools. Excessive distraction may be counted as an absence.
  • You can use Twitter for in-class participation but try not to over-rely on it.

Technical Specifications

You will need a public Twitter account so that all of your peers can see your tweets and your tweets are included in searches for the class hashtag. You do not have to use your real name in your Twitter account, but you do need to give me your Twitter handle.

Grading

Participation is worth 50% of your final grade.

The criteria for grading your work are:

Excellent

Good

Fair

Needs Improvement

Failing

In-class discussion

The student always contributes meaningful comments and ideas to class discussion*. The student may additionally contribute to the in-class Tweet stream.

The student consistently contributes comments and ideas to class discussion. Class discussion may be supplemented with in-class Twitter participation.

The student often contributes comments and ideas to class discussion or supplements with in-class Twitter participation.

The student rarely contributes comments and ideas to class discussion and may over-rely on Twitter in class.

The student never contributes to class discussion or in-class Twitter.

Reading Responses(see reading response instructions)
Tool Reviews(see tool review instructions)

*Note: you do not always have to fully grasp the material to make meaningful comments. You may ask questions and make a good effort to understand.

Your Participation grade will be negatively impacted if:

  • You have more than one absence.
  • You are consistently late or leave early.
  • You are excessively distracted by other websites, your phone, etc.
  • You do not use workshop time effectively.
  • Your average score on the reading quizzes is fewer than three points.

Late Work: Work associated with participation may not be completed late

Reading Response Instructions

EMAC 4325 Reading Response Instructions

Spring 2016

Purpose:

  • To help students identify their questions and areas of interest in a text prior to class discussion.

  • To give students practice in communicating complex ideas succinctly.

  • To help students enter into the larger community of emerging media scholars.

Background:

Class discussions are more satisfying when everyone has actively engaged with the text and when they bring their ideas and questions to the class meeting. To that end, students will post responses, questions and/or responses to one another on Twitter  in advance of our meetings.

The Specs:

  • During the first class meeting, the group decided on the number of tweets for each section of the rubric. The class additionally brainstormed the criteria for what is considered a good tweet and a poor tweet. Pictured below is a photo taken of that brainstorming exercise.
  • Use the hashtag #digitaltext

Technical Support:

  • You can check your progress at any time by accessing the class Twitter archive:

Grading:

Reading responses are part of your participation grade.

As a class we brainstormed criteria for satisfactory completion of this assignment (see the images below). Based on this brainstorm, Kim developed the grading rubric, copied below from the participation assignment sheet.

Reading Responses (See 4325 Participation Assignment Sheet)  Student tweets in response to assigned readings 7-10 times per week, with the course hashtag (#digitaltext). Excellent response tweets consistently engage productively with the text(s), asking insightful questions or bringing new understandings. The student is consistently creative with the use of other media, such as images, video, and links to external content. Relevant hashtags and references to the reading (cues, page numbers, paragraph numbers, etc) are used to facilitate engagement. Student tweets in response to assigned readings 5-6 times per week, with the course hashtag (#digitaltext). Good response tweets generally engage productively with the text(s), asking insightful questions or bringing new understandings. The student is generally creative with the use of other media, such as images, video, and links to external content. Relevant hashtags and references to the reading are used to facilitate engagement. Student tweets in response to assigned readings 3-4 times per week, with the course hashtag (#digitaltext). Fair tweets consistently engage with the text, but may lack insight or fail to bring about new understandings. Other media is used in a relevant fashion. The student attempts to include relevant hashtags and references. Student tweets in response to assigned readings 1-2 times per week, with the course hashtag (#digitaltext). The student may need improvement if they over-rely on summary or engage in unconstructive responses. Hashtags may be overused or irrelevant. The tweets may lack textual cues or references. Student tweets in response to assigned readings less than once per week, with the course hashtag (#digitaltext). The student is generally considered failing if they  tweet sporadically, or if the tweets are uncivil or off-topic.

Timeline and Due Dates:

Reading Responses are due by 11:59 pm on Tuesday evenings.

Tool Review Instructions

EMAC 4325 Tool Review Instructions

Spring 2016

Purpose:

  • To compile a repository of tools to use in the exploration of new models of textual production
  • To analyze the functionality of the tools in light of class readings and discussion.

Overview:

  • Each presenter will write one new tool review no later than their assigned date. They will conduct a 15-20 minute presentation on the tool in class on their assigned date.
    • The tool can be selected from previously un-reviewed tools on one of the resources lists (i.e. one of the tools that does not have a red check mark next to it), or something new that the presenter adds to the wiki.
  • A tool is a website/application/piece of software that can be used to produce media objects for the final portfolio.
    • Tools should be selected with the goal of introducing your peers to new ideas, modes, possibilities, etc.  (i.e. nothing “obvious”)
  • Keep in mind that this is not a tutorial. Your goal is to introduce the tool and review its functionality, but not to produce a step-by-step usage guide.

Grading:

The tool review write-up and presentation are part of your participation grade.

Writing All sections of the review contain useful information. The student provides excellent examples of the type of work possible with the tool and includes ample further resources to help peers get started. The page is well-formatted and placed in the correct folder and links are included on the index and student’s course participant page. All sections are filled out and the majority contain useful information. The student provides examples of the type of work possible with the tool and includes further resources to help peers get started. The page is well-formatted and placed in the correct folder and links are included on the index and student’s page. All sections are thoroughly filled in. The student provides at least one example of the type of work possible with the tool and includes further resources. The page uses the template and is placed in the correct folder and links are included on the index and student’s page. The student’s review of the new tool may be unclear or lack sufficient detail. The tool review page may not use the template, may be incorrectly placed, or the student may not have added the required links. The review is incomplete or unintelligible.
Presentation The presentation is dynamic and well-organized. The speaker communicates how the tools can be used in the portfolio assignment. The presentation is clear and engaging. The speaker communicates what each tool does. The presentation is clear and addresses both tools. The presentation may lack clarity or may unevenly address the tools. The presentation lacks clarity.

Instructions

No later than 2 weeks before your presentation

Follow these steps to ensure that you do not review something that is already claimed by someone else.

  1. Go to the Resources Index page for the medium in which you are working (your scheduled date is within a unit and your tool should help students prepare for the media object in that unit’s workshop)
    1. Text Unit
      1. Text Production Resources Index
    2. Still Image Unit
      1. Still Image Resources Index
      2. Visualization Resources Index
    3. Sound Unit
      1. Sound Resources Index
    4. Moving Image Unit
      1. Video and Animation Resources Index
  2. Check the alphabetical list of tools to see if your tool is listed.
    1. If a tool is listed, but not reviewed:
      1. edit the page to add your name in parentheses next to the name of the tool.
    2. If it is listed, but already reviewed:
      1. choose something else.
    3. If it is listed, but already has someone else’s name next to it:
      1. choose something else.
    4. If it is not listed:
      1. edit the page to add the tool in the proper alphabetical order. Be sure to add all of the following:
        1. Name of the tool
        2. Your name in parentheses next to the tool
        3. very brief synopsis of what the tool does
        4. A link to the website for the tool

Before Your Presentation Date

1. Create a page and name it with the name of the new tool under review.

  • Use the “Tool Review” template.
    • You do not have to put tool review or your name in the page title
  • Place the page in the appropriate folder.

2. Write your review, filling in all areas of the template.

3. Add a link to the review on the appropriate resource index page. Copy and paste the “reviewed” check mark image next to the name of the tool.

5. Add a link to the tool review on your course participant page.

Technical Requirements

  • If your tool has to be installed on any UTD computers, please let me know at least two weeks in advance.

Timeline and Due Dates:

  • Rolling due dates with written reviews posted to the course wiki before the class meets each Wednesday.

Portfolio Assignment

EMAC 4325 Final Portfolio

Spring 2016

Purpose:

  • To demonstrate familiarity with theoretical and material connections between analog and digital forms of text, image, sound, and moving image.
  • To explore new models of digital production, including short forms and collaboration.
  • To engage in processes of feedback and revision to improve your work.

Overview:

In order to better grasp the way that meaning is made in different media forms, students need to take the ideas from class readings and discussions and apply them to the production of four different digital media objects. The production of these objects will take place in a scaffolded structure wherein students compose early versions, receive feedback, and improve them.

Students will be introduced to new tools for producing digital media objects each week in class.  These introductions will take the form of Tool Workshops led by their peers.  In addition students should browse the Tool Reviews and resource indexes in the course wiki.  Students are not required to use tools that are listed in the wiki, but in the spirit of collaboration and community, they should add any tools that they are using to the Resource Index pages.

Instructions:

  • What’s in the portfolio?
    • Four digital media objects, one each for text, still image, sound, and moving image.
      • Multimedia pieces are acceptable, however each should foreground one of the different media forms.
      • You may use the sound piece in the moving image object, but other than that you should compose a different media object for each workshop.
      • Collaboration is allowed, but multiply the length requirements by the number of collaborators. Media objects should reflect the number of collaborators in complexity, scale, and quality. You may collaborate on one or all media objects, but not on the final paper.
    • In addition to the digital media objects, each portfolio should also contain a short research paper (600 – 900 words) that makes an argument about digital textuality.
    • See sections below for specifications on each particular media object and for additional items due in the Portfolio.
  • Topic
    • At the beginning of the semester, each student will choose a story or argument with which they will work all semester.
    • The story or argument may be derived from one of the student’s other classes or capstone, but all work turned in should be original work composed for this class and may not be graded as part of any other class or assignment.
  • Audience
    • Consider your audience to be educated professionals interested in topics of emerging media.
  • Turning it in
    • The portfolio materials must be copied into or linked from your course participant page in the class wiki.
  • Each student will give a 5-minute presentation in which they present their portfolio work at the end of the semester.

Technical Details:

  • Students should employ Revision Control so that version 1 can be submitted along with the final version in the portfolio.
  • If students need equipment to capture images, video, or sounds, EMAC has equipment available to borrow. Borrowing can be arranged through the ATEC equipment inventory. The UTD Library will also loan equipment.
  • Be sure to allow plenty of time during the drafting process and before the final due date for technical difficulties.

Digital Media Objects – Specific Requirements

Text

  • 600 – 900 words.
  • Possible formats for the text media object include:
    • Digital Text: 600 – 900 words of original composition (reflection, research, creative-writing, etc.) that is formatted for a digital platform (wiki, blog, twitter, goAnimate, etc.).
    • Remediation: remediate another media object into 600 – 900 words of digital text.
    • Other ideas must be cleared with Kim prior to the due date of version 1.
  • In addition to the criteria in the Grading section below, text-specific qualities include To be filled in by the class

Still Image

  • Generally 8 – 10 images, unless otherwise noted.
  • Possible formats for the still image media object include:
    • Comic: A comic strip of 8 – 10 frames.
    • Photo Essay: A photo-essay of 8 – 10 original or creative-commons-licensed images (or a mixture).
      • You may only use creative commons images if:
        • the image is of an object or situation that is rare or inaccessible enough that you could not capture it yourself.
          • Note that this does include quality.
        • or the image is heavily modified.
      • If you use creative commons images, you must follow the terms of the license and give proper attribution.
    • Collage: A collage composed of 8 – 10 source images (original, creative-commons, or a mixture).
      • The same cc guidelines apply as to the photo essay.
    • Visualizations: A series of 8 – 10 data or text visualizations.
    • Remediation: remediate another media object into 8 – 10 images
    • Other ideas must be cleared with Kim prior to the due date of the version 1.
  • In addition to the criteria in the Grading section below, image-specific qualities include To be filled in by the class

Sound

  • 60 – 90 seconds.
  • Possible formats for the sound media object include:
    • Composition: Original musical compositions, abstract, vocal, or instrumental.
    • Recording: Original audio recordings of stories, events, environmental sounds, noise, etc.
    • Remixing: Remixes or mashups of public domain or creative commons music and recordings.
      • The remixed version should heavily modify the source material.
    • Remediation: remediate another media object into a 60 – 90 second sound composition or recording.
    • Other ideas must be cleared with Kim prior to the due date of version 1.
  • In addition to the criteria in the Grading section below, sound-specific qualities include To be filled in by the class

Moving Image

  • 60 – 90 seconds.
  • Possible formats for the moving image media object include:
    • Video Production: narrative, informative, time lapse photography (converted to video), music video, etc. 60 – 90 seconds.
    • Animation: narrative, informative, etc. 60 – 90 seconds. (note that this does not include GoAnimate or XtraNormal, which are too text heavy)
    • Remixing: Two or more videos combined to total 60 – 90 seconds.
    • Other ideas must be cleared with Kim prior to the due date of the first version.
  • In addition to the criteria in the Grading section below, the specific qualities of moving images include To be filled in by the class

Portfolio

  • Should include:
    • Final versions of the four digital media objects, including a short explanation of revisions you made.
    • First versions of the four digital media objects.
    • The 600 – 900 word paper.
      • In addition to the digital media objects, each portfolio should also contain a short research paper (600 – 900 words) that makes an argument about digital textuality.
        • Cite 3 or more readings to support your argument. Use any citation format consistently.
        • You can reference your media objects in the research paper to help supplement your argument.
      • Options for uploading the paper include:
        • 1. Cut and paste the contents of the paper into your wiki page or wherever you are hosting your portfolio. If you do this, please be sure to double check to ensure that your formatting (particularly paragraph breaks) remains intact.
        • 2. Upload the paper to google drive and include a link to your portfolio. Don’t forget to set the sharing settings so Kim can view it.
    • Everything should be linked from your course participant page on the wiki.

Grading

The Portfolio is worth 50% of your final grade.  You will be graded on the following criteria:

Excellent Good Satisfactory Needs Improvement Failing
Media object content Media objects are consistently interesting or thought-provoking.  Any obfuscation is meaningful and purposely employed. Media objects are mostly interesting or thought-provoking. Any obfuscation is meaningful and purposely employed. Media objects have a clear argument or idea and are occasionally interesting or thought-provoking. Any obfuscation is meaningful and purposely employed. Media objects may lack a clear idea or focus. Media objects may be boring. One or more media objects is off-topic or so unclear as to be unintelligible.
Media form(see above for more about the signifiers of each medium) Media objects are consistently daring or interesting on the formal level and utilize the unique affordances of each medium. The form enhances the meaning and is designed to appeal to the intended audience. Media objects are well-composed and mostly utilize the unique affordances of each medium. For the most part the design appeals to the intended audience. The form of each media object supports effective communication and attempts to use the unique affordances of each medium. Additionally, each media object indicates an awareness of the audience. One or more media objects may be unclear, the form disconnected from meaning, or exhibit confusion about the audience. One or more media objects fails to communicate, is off-topic, formally obscures meaning, or ignores the audience.
Remixing, re-use, remediation(if applicable) Media objects amplify aspects of the  source material and consistently enhance meaning. Media objects amplify aspects of the source material and are generally used to enhance meaning. Media objects amplify aspects of the  source material. Repurposed material is used ineffectively. Source material is largely unaltered or becomes unintelligible in repurposing.
Drafting and Revising First versions are full-length and polished. Feedback for peers is consistently concrete and constructive. The student’s revisions make extensive improvements to their own work. First versions are full-length and polished. Feedback for peers is mostly concrete and constructive. The student’s revisions show substantial effort and generally improve their work. First versions are full-length and mostly polished. Feedback for peers makes a substantial effort to give concrete and constructive feedback. The student’s revisions show substantial effort. First versions may be short or in draft form. Feedback for peers or revision of one’s own work may lack substance. First versions are never completed. The student may give unhelpful feedback or fail to revise their own work.
Research Paper The research paper is consistently thought-provoking and well-organized. The author uses well-chosen sources to enhance meaning. The research paper is generally thought-provoking and well-organized. The author uses sources carefully in support of meaning. The research paper is well-organized and interesting. The author’s use of sources does not obscure their own voice. The paper may lack clarity or be boring. Sources may be missing or obscure the writer’s voice. The paper may be off-topic, fail to cite sources, or may be unintelligible.

Things that will detract from your grade:

  • Failure to meet minimum length requirements.
  • Late materials, including first versions. See the “Late Work” section for more information.
  • Missing items from the final portfolio.
  • Ignoring the license(s) of repurposed media objects.
  • Failure to present your portfolio, in the time allotted, at the end of the semester.

A Word About Late Work

  • First versions: Each instance of late first versions of written/image/video/acoustic work will result in a loss of 1/3 of a grade on the final portfolio. If you are not in class for the portfolio workshop, your work is considered late. Neither Kim nor your peers will respond to late first versions.
  • Final portfolio: Final portfolios will be marked down one letter grade for each day (or fraction thereof) that they are late.
  • Presentations: Late presentations are not allowed.

A Word About Drafting and Revising

  • You’ll notice the use of the terms “version” instead of “draft.”  That is because these are not “rough drafts.”  On days that first versions are due, you should bring in a polished and completed object so that your peers may give you as much helpful feedback as possible.
  • It is important that feedback is given constructively and with respect.  It is also important that feedback be concrete and specific.  We will come up with peer review guidelines in class on portfolio workshop days.
  • You will receive feedback from multiple student peers as well as from Kim or Brianni. Though you are required to revise your work, you do not have to make any of the specific changes suggested during peer review. However, if you are hearing similar suggestions from multiple people, you would be wise to strongly consider them.
  • Make sure to retain copies of your first version of each media object to include in the portfolio.

Timeline and Due Dates

See the Academic Calendar for due dates.

Peer Review Groups

 

 

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