I have created a multimodal tutorial designed to show my students the steps to build a thematic assertion statement. Since this lesson is at the beginning of their first informational process piece, I decided to reinforce daily mini-lessons with accompanying multimodal tutorials. Tools like these are examples of the how our “culture has embraced vastly new and dynamically changing media” and it has become the expectation that instruction is moving beyond traditional tools such as textbooks, chalkboards, overhead projectors, ring binders, and composition books(O’Byrne). In our school, we operate under the assumption that every student has digital access and can therefore take advantage of tools such as multimodal tutorials. Much of this access is through a smartphone owned by the student or a parent.
My initial audience (Audience A) is my students and as stated, it is not designed to be the only form of instruction, but to reinforce what has been taught already. Being attentive to the audience and purpose of the tutorial, I chose to include a video explaining the steps in the process with accompanying annotations, as well as screenshots of written instructions. I did not include rationales, limitations, caveats, because those things were done verbally. As far as the appearance for my tutorial goes, I chose to use a font that is less formal. I remember experimenting with different types of fonts ranging from Times new Roman to Georgia; however, I ended up going with one that seemed a bit more “fun.” Also, I spent time looking at the different colors for slides and eventually chose one that would not get in the way of students’ ability to focus on the information. Although I had not considered it then, now that I am reflecting on the appearance of my tutorial, I think about the fact that I am introducing students to a formal writing piece, and my choices for how I would convey the information all seem to be grounded in being less formal.
If I were to re imagine this tutorial for another audience, I would most likely consider educators (Audience B) because the information presented in the tutorial would be of interest to them in terms of instructing how to help students create assertions statements to drive their papers. With this new audience in mind, I realize that I would maintain the form, but the purpose would change from reinforcement to instruction. The reason I would keep the multimodal tutorial as the mode of presentation is because it is an effective tool for showing how to engage in a process to achieve a specific result. While the information present to Audience A would remain in the presentation for Audience B,, I would need to add additional information to fulfill the needs of my new audience. For starters, I would perhaps change the font to include a more standard or professional one. I would also include a discussion of where I got the strategy, which means that I would discuss Lynn Erickson and her work with concept-based curricula.
Further, for Audience B, I believe that it would be important to include some limitations of the strategy, including what happens if students do not choose appropriate concepts to begin with and also information about the fact that throughout the entire process, constant revision of ideas and form is important. Finally, I may choose to include a sample student paper to illustrate how this first part builds to culminate with a final writing piece.