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Teaching and Learning Multimodal Communications

Alyssa Arbuckle, Alison Hedley, Shaun Macpherson, Alyssa McLeod, Jana Millar Usiskin, Daniel Powell, Jentery Sayers, Emily Smith, Michael Stevens, Authors

This comment was written by Daniel Powell on 9 Jul 2013.

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Difficulties of Capture: Commenting on Workflows

This assignment was deeply useful in two ways: First, it was the class' first exposure to Scalar for the purposes of completing course assignments. Second, it forced each individual to focus on their (mostly unconscious) workflow. As much as the advent of digital technologies for research, and the accompanying deluge of more or less relevant information, force the adoption of new methods and tools, it was useful to take a moment and reflect on what exactly we were using to undertake research at the graduate level.

As I noted in my response to the prompt, the most startling fact I noticed about my own work habits was the speed at which I navigated digital research environments, especially databases and search engines. I also noticed that organization is essential to keeping up with, using, and preserving the large quantity of information modern scholars can access with the click of a trackpad.

It was also interesting to try my hand at screencasting. I can see why it would be useful in some cases, but the genre seems to necessitate an artificial slowing of real-life work pace. It seems like the same information on process could be imparted verbally or in writing with greater clarity and efficiency. Nevertheless, I appreciated the chance to try the technique out on a topic related to my studies.

Addendum: As part of our revision process for publication, much of our media had to be moved from personal web space to more stable and enduring locations. As a result, both of my screencasts are now housed on YouTube rather than on my personal University of Victoria server space. In a way, this is easier than using a file transfer program to upload files to a server; however, what I gained in ease I arguably lost in control of my materials.

Author: Daniel Powell
Word Count: 303
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Workflow: Challenges and Opportunities (9 July 2013)
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