||Defining Multimodal Composition||Affordances
the links below, I describe the first two substantially different
iterations of the webtext you are currently reading. I describe these
texts for several purposes.
First, I want you to see different examples of what student eportfolios might look like, especially when students use templates (via either downloadable or web-based programs) or attempt to mimic the styles templates typically produce.
Second, I want to highlight how my ideas have shifted. The first two drafts offer substantial literature reviews and many confusing page links that are ultimately quite linear (although that does not make the texts easier to navigate; in fact, these texts are rather difficult to navigate due to the overwhelming volume of writing).
Third, by physically showing you these pages and describing the changes made from one version to the next, I hope you will see the affordances and constraints of portfolios and multimodal composition I've described throughout the piece. For example, you will, perhaps, take note of the use of varied modes of writing in each draft and compare those modes with this version. You may notice process being invoked: the process of moving one draft forward, of determining which modes are more communicative than others, and of revising document design and language choices. The process I invoke is characteristic of Lauer's (2009) definition of multimodality while simultaneously evoking the elusive process portfolios attempt to showcase and reconstruct for voyeur composition instructors.
Including these drafts is not only an example of what strengths and weaknesses might surface while students work on portfolio and multimodal compositions, though. As I have argued, composition classes are strengthened when teachers scaffold these assignments and deliberate teach the transferable nature of the skills needed to successful create either document. The drafts I include here contribute to my thoughts about the transferable nature of rhetorical skills and the need to deliberate address them. My drafts are the direct result of colleague feedback. Colleagues from various institutions and at various points in their careers have contributed to my own ability to see the rhetorical nature of this eportfolio. There feedback has pushed me to think about my rhetoric skills and to strengthen my rhetorical work--making my writing, logic, andorganization that much more accessible to my audience.
The affordances and constraints of portfolios and multimodal composing make these parallel teaching tools. My portfolio-esque webtext showcases both the affordances and constraints of working with mutlimodality and portfolios. Although my argument is more centrally located on the Home Page and Reflections Page, these drafts act as illustrations of my argument. Students will encounter difficulties with composing in multimodal mediums, they will encounter difficulties putting together portfolios, but they will also build critical thinking skills, knowledge of design and argument, and the skills necessary to grow as writers through attention to their audiences.
After reviewing these two drafts and thinking about the more limited information presented in the current version, I hope readers see how my eportfolio (multimodal and portfolio composition working in tandem) helped me (as it helps students) think through my argument and the ways in which my writing has progressed. I hope, too, readers see how my multimodal composing has developed. The multiple modes used to craft this webtext in the vein of the portfolio genre has taken quite a bit of time. It fails, on some levels, as students' multimodal compositions may fail. However, by demonstrating the multiple drafts and the progress of the multimodal composition, readers can see how my thinking and skills have evolved and shifted, making my writing process more transparent while showcasing how students' multimodal texts evolve over the course of the semester. Further, because this text is an embodiment of multimodal writing being implemented in conjunction with portfolio work, the drafts demonstrate how one genre builds on the next. I've used multimodal strategies to craft an argument, but I've also had to learn how to move that argument from one setting (the original template I used) to a new rhetorical setting (writing a website from scratch using KompoZer and my limited knowledge of HTML). By including my drafts, I hope to show readers just how I have been able to transfer rhetorical skills from one situation to the next, which may be indicative of the transfer work students can accomplish when guided by teacher and peer feedback from one genre of writing to the next.
||Defining Multimodal Composition||Affordances