Using Multimodal Text Annotations to Promote Cultural Literacy
Project Director: Dr. Chantelle Warner (U. Arizona). Projects Collaborators: Dr. R. Ariew (U. Arizona); Dr. K. da Costa Bezerra (U. Arizona); Dr. A. Iğsiz (New York U., previously U. Arizona) [In collaboration with CLAS; CMES; COH and the National Middle East Language Resource Center]
Description: The importance of cultural literacy and transcultural competence, the ability to understand a foreign language and culture on its own terms, has become a pressing issue in foreign language pedagogy in this current age of globalization where meanings traffic easily but superficially. However, the teaching of language in culture comes with its own set of pedagogical problems.
This project will create culturally annotated hypermedia texts in Arabic, German, Portuguese, and Turkish, as well as pedagogical materials to accompany them with the goal of developing new pedagogies for the teaching of language as culture through literary texts. (Arabic and Italian hypermedia texts are available in a previous incarnation of this project. See below for details.)
A number of recent studies have focused on the use of annotation in multimedia environments for enhancing L2 text comprehension and promoting vocabulary acquisition and have reported that prior knowledge is integral to reading processes. By decentering the cultural background information that is provided to the students through hypermedia annotation, this project seeks to promote cultural literacy through the “interpretive mode,” “the ability to read (or listen) between the lines”.