Designing a research practice

Designing multi-modal learning experiences
Through visualisation, what can we learn about  multi-modal communication in pedagogy?

What
The research looks to build an understanding of multi-modal communication in practice by developing an accessible visual language that can replace or supplement speech and writing in teaching practice. The language will create a visual record of one’s current pedagogical practice, helping to provide perspective on the delivery modes. The documented visual scenarios provide one with the possibility to objectively review and reshape their practice through making.  The formal visual language will be future-thinking and use digital technology to move beyond the static nature of current ideographic languages.

Why
The study seeks to deliberately adopt alternative ways of conducting, publishing and valuing research by moving beyond the text-centric approach common to academia. It appeals to my interest in subordinate ways of knowing by focusing on non-discursive processing. Additionally, the study seeks to develop inclusive learning experiences that speak to varied personalities and learning style preferences. 

I hope a design research lens will reveal blind spots in practice and help develop facilitator/learner competency in multi-modal communication. Insights from the research should help facilitators integrate different modes of communication more meaningfully into the curricular and their practice. Additionally, the knowledge gained reinforces the urgency to form multi-literacy collaborative partnerships that can communicate across a spectrum of channels.

How
The research will be practice-led and multi-method. Data will be expressed non-numerically and represented in forms other than words — this may include ideographic writing systems, data visualisation, animations, digital interactions and live action etc. (B. Haseman, 2006). The practice-led process will use design thinking methods and visual communication to disseminate research that is both accessible and engaging for communities beyond and within academia (Conquergood, 2002). 

Who
The investigation will be rooted in design pedagogy; however, the knowledge generated will be transferrable to other disciplines and professional practice.