Methods of Good Practice
The resulting methods of good practice that emerged through Engage evaluation efforts can help in the planning and integration of digital media assignments in a course.
- Assign students to work on projects in small groups to promote student-to-student interaction and to build collaboration skills.
- Provide training and support resources to help students learn new multimedia tools and software. Ensure these resources are available to students at the time of greatest need during the development process.
- Educate students about the resources and methods for acquiring digital assets, as well as the ethical and legal issues related to using these materials in their projects.
- Address a real problem to increase motivation and to provide students with the opportunity to share their projects with an audience outside the course to obtain authentic feedback (rather than a strictly classroom audience).
Additionally, through reflecting on what helped award participants and consultants succeed in their own projects, the following points should be considered before starting a digital media assignment.
- Meet with a learning technology consultant early in the design process for the assignment.
- Study different examples of digital media assignments to understand and recognize the ways in which others have presented information in a multimodal format.
- Develop a digital media assignment before assigning one to students. This will help identify the knowledge and skills student will demonstrate through their digital media assignment.
- Identify and recommend specific technologies students should use for their assignment.
- When selecting technologies, build on technologies that are familiar to students.
- Remember that students can overestimate their technical abilities. Help them assess their level of expertise with the technologies being used.
- Identify campus digital media equipment checkout, support, and training resources for students.
- Develop and share the rubric to be used to evaluate their digital media assignment.
- Help students understand the amount of time required to complete a digital media assignment.
- Implement check-in phases of a project to guide students through a thoughtful process (i.e., storyboarding, script writing, rough draft, critique and feedback, and final due date).
- Provide students with small, low-risk activities prior to giving them an official digital media assignment to give them an opportunity to practice and develop communication and media literacy skills.
- Provide in-class time for students to work on their digital media assignment.