EDLT 520/620 Multimedia and Authoring/Critical Digital Literacy

Fall 2015


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Instructor Information | Course Description | Readings & Resources | Learning Theories & Instructional Methods | CoEd Conceptual Framework | Prerequisites | Netiquette & Communication Standards | Overarching Themes that Impact this Course | Course Competencies | Assignments & Assessments | TK20 Account Purchase | Late Assignment Policy | Withdrawal | Multiple Submissions | Incomplete Grades | Plagiarism | ADA and Other Important NMSU Services | Accessibility of eLearning Tools | NMSU Technology Support for Learners | Other NMSU Student Learning and Support Resources | Document Changes | References

Instructor Information        

Dr. Julia Parra

Email: juparra@nmsu.edu

Gmail: julia.parra@gmail.com for all things Google!

Skype Contact ID: desertjul

Office: 575-646-4066

Cell: 575-571-5430

See course HomePage at for office hours day/time. Please note that I am online most of the day. If you need immediate help, text me via my cell, Skype, or Google Chat and I will get back with you as soon as possible. If you do not need immediate help, please contact me via email at juparra@nmsu.edu or within the Canvas learning management system. I will respond within 48 hours (usually much sooner).

Course Information


In this course, we will explore the educational potential of multimedia and authoring tools from the perspective of educational technology coordinator.  We will evaluate and use a variety of multimedia authoring tools including website, video, audio, image editing and apps (iOS/Android) for educational applications.

Of note, this course is being transitioned to the course title of Critical Digital Literacy. Thus, the learning goals will now include an emphasis on the exploration and application of critical digital literacy skills.

Course Duration: 2015 Fall Semester August 25 - December 11

Where: O'Donnell Hall 027 (note the room change) and Online/Blended at http://learn.nmsu.edu for content and in the Conferences tool in Canvas for those of you joining us online for our live meetings. The online course will be published on the Monday before our first class meeting by 4pm MT.

When: Tuesdays, 4:45 pm - 7:15 pm, see the Schedule and the Live Synchronous Meeting Dates resources in the Canvas Course.

What to bring? Laptop, tablet, or iPad, smartphone when noted & a snack if you need one, just not messy snacks :)

Readings, Materials, & Resources

You must use the related online/blended course located in the NMSU Canvas system at http://learn.nmsu.edu. Related course materials, assignment tools, communications, and grades will be available there. The online/blended course will be made available on the day classes meet.

This semester, I am requiring the purchase of an app titled, Monument Valley. However, if you do not have a device that can play this app (iOS, android, Kindle, and Windows), I have a device you can borrow to engage with this app. Also, you do not need it yet...

Monument Valley Site 

I am no longer requiring books in my LDT/EDLT classes. We are hoping to encourage innovative technology adoption so consider investing in an iOS device (iPad, iPod touch, iPhone), a Kindle device, a Nook device, or an Android device. I will be providing project opportunities related to iOS apps, Android apps, and Kindles from now on. Many resources are incorporated in course materials and you are encouraged to research every topic we tackle. One great way to research is to use http://scholar.google.com.

If you must have a book, here is a link to my Amazon bookstore with lots of related titles.

Excellent Online Resources

About the Schedule

A week begins on Tuesday and ends on Monday. This aligns with our Tuesday live meeting days. Unless otherwise noted, assignments are due by 11:59pm (Mountain Time) Mondays in the week they're listed.

The schedule built into the LMS, Canvas, and is an excellent tool, so check it out! Of course, I have an accompanying Course Schedule document as well that will be available when the online course is published. Of note, the online course will be available by Monday, August 24 at 4pm.

Learning Theories and Instructional Methods

In this course, we will be responsible learners, creating optimal learning experiences by engaging with a variety of learning theories, approaches, instructional strategies and methods including Technology-based Pedagogy (Gao, Choy, Wong, & Wu, 2009), Heutagogy (Hase & Kenyon, 2000; Blaschke, 2012), Social Constructivism (Vygotsky, 2005), Connectivism (Siemens, 2005), Transformative Learning Theory (Mezirow, 2000), Connected Learning Community (Nussbaum-Beach & Hall, 2012), Critical Media (Kellner & Share, 2005), and Hybrid Pedagogy (Stommel, 2012) that support learners who are culturally and technically diverse. I want you all to help construct your own learning in this class; help each other and work together as a learning and knowledge building/creating (Scardamalia & Bereiter, 2010) community; make new connections across the variety of nodes and networks that are available to you; and experience as much transformation as possible.

Hands-on practice, experiential learning, and learner choice are primary strategies in this course. Specific learner and learning-centered strategies used and modeled include technology-based projects; online discussions; and group or team work. Instructional methods include tutorials, discussions, demonstrations, webinars, student presentations and more.


I want you to know that it is very important to me that we create a true learning and knowledge building community (Connected Learning Community as noted by Nussbaum-Beach & Hall, 2012) and support each other at all times. This means that communication, collaboration, relationship building, knowledge creation, sharing, kindness, interaction, engagement, transformation, and hard work will guide us on our Learning Design & Technology Adventures.

College of Education Conceptual Framework Theme: PREPARED

The EDLT program and this course supports the College of Education's Conceptual Framework Theme: PREPARED.  The EDLT program and this course prepares you to be learning technology practitioners (NM Information and Technology Coordinators) and leaders. The projects, activities, interactions, and assessments in this course directly support your development in the areas of reflection, effectiveness and professionalism, pedagogy (as well as andragogy and heutagogy), assessment and evaluation, research, and diversity.  

See the PREPARED resource

Course Prerequisites

This course is a part of the Master of Arts in Education: Learning Design and Technology which requires application to the graduate school.

This course can also be taken as a graduate level elective for students in other programs. It is recommended to consult with the instructor to make sure this course meets student needs.

Technology Prerequisites

This course will provide you the opportunity to experience a variety of multimedia and authoring tools. This list is a minimum of what you will need for this course.

Netiquette and Communications Standards

As this is a hybrid/blended class, some of these are specific to online interaction. The concepts are valid Face-to-Face (F2F) and online.

First, what you can expect from me:

Regarding Discussions, I like to encourage interactions among everyone and do not wish to be a "sage on the stage" so I do not respond to every or even most of the posts of any required online discussions. In other words, I do not wish to be nor is it appropriate that I be the center of every conversation. It is your job to post to the required discussions and to each other. It is my job to motivate, engage, facilitate, redirect, consult, grade, etc. And if needed, I provide a post-discussion email or video response.

I will communicate with you about your assignments within the week after the assignment is due. If I am unable to do so, I will let you know when you can expect to receive feedback.

Next, what I expect from all of us:

First, a definition (from wikipedia):

"Netiquette (neologism, a morphological blend formed from "Internet etiquette") is a catch-all term for the conventions of politeness and respect recognized on Usenet, in mailing lists, in live chat systems, and on other electronic forums such as Internet message boards. These conventions address the relationship between personal behavior and group phenomena, (emphasis added) and outline a dynamic set of guidelines for conduct that is conducive to pleasant, efficient and agreeable interaction."

To that end, please follow these netiquette guidelines:

Remember that "politeness" and "appropriateness" are culturally-defined concepts. What is considered polite or appropriate communication in one culture (educational environments are a culture as well and, as such, are also included in this statement) may be impolite or inappropriate in another. When in doubt, err on the side of uber-caution when you are composing a message. And, when reading someone else's message, try to remember that written communication is easily misconstrued: so, if you find yourself responding poorly to someone's message, request clarification of their meaning before you get upset and respond with a flaming message. :)

Communication Style

If you are interested in the importance of communication and these concepts, I have a couple of excellent book you can check out such as William Isaacs’ Dialogue and the Art of Thinking Together.

Finally, I really want to see you all interacting and engaging with each other in every discussion. Make an appointment with yourself, on your calendar, however that works best for you to make sure you are checking into this course at least 3 times a week. This is an important habit to form right away!

Overarching Themes that Impact this Course

This course takes into consideration the recently released National Educational Technology Plan, the yearly released Horizon Report, and the ISTE NETS. These are resources you should know about as an educational technology expert.

On November 9, 2010 the final version of the new National Educational Technology Plan was released by the Department of Education. eSchool News reported, “the new National Educational Technology Plan includes a focus on individualized instruction and connectivity”.

The final version outlines five goals:

  1. using educational technology to fundamentally change the learning process by making it more engaging and tailored to individual student needs and interests;
  2. using ed tech to develop a new generation of assessments;
  3. connecting teachers with their peers and experts so they are always up-to-date on the resources available to them;
  4. building infrastructure that lets schools support access to technology in and out of the classroom; and
  5. harnessing the power of educational technology to increase school district productivity and student achievement.

The full National Educational Technology Plan and executive summary can be viewed by visiting: http://www.ed.gov/technology/netp-2010.

The 2012 Horizon Report notes key trends and emerging technologies. Key trends include:

  1. The abundance of resources and relationships made easily accessible via the Internet is increasingly challenging us to revisit our roles.
  2. Education paradigms are shifting to include online learning, hybrid learning and collaborative models.
  3. People expect to be able to work, learn, and study whenever and wherever they want to.
  4. The technologies we use are increasingly cloud-based, and our notions of IT support are decentralized.
  5. There is a new emphasis in the classroom on more challenge-based and active learning.
  6. The world of work is increasingly collaborative, driving changes in the way student projects are structured. (pp. 3-5)

Top 6 Technologies to watch:

  1. Mobile Apps (<1yr)
  2. Tablet Computing (<1yr)
  3. Game-Based Learning (2-3yrs)
  4. Learning Analytics (2-3yrs)
  5. Gesture-Based Computing (3-5yrs)
  6. Internet of Things (3-5 yrs)

Others that made the short list:

  1. Cloud Computing (<1yr)
  2. Social Reading (<1yr)
  3. Adaptive Learning Environments (2-3yrs)
  4. Augmented Reality (2-3yrs)
  5. Digital Identity (3-5yrs)
  6. Haptic Interfaces (3-5 yrs)

Read the full Horizon Report 2012 by creating an account for free and downloading it at http://www.nmc.org/publications/horizon-report-2012-higher-ed-edition

For the newest reports, visit http://www.nmc.org/nmc-horizon/.

The ISTE NETS provide National Educational Technology Standards for Administrators, Teachers, Students, and Computer Science Teachers.

As educational technology experts, we should be aware of these and learn more as we need. The overarching purpose of the NETS is  - “to set a standard of excellence and best practices in learning, teaching, and leading with technology in education. The benefits of using the NETS include:

Access all the ISTE NETS standards at http://www.iste.org/standards.aspx

Course & Program Competencies

These are some of the competencies that have been historically required by the state for Technology Coordinator endorsement. Where applicable, the related competencies are addressed and noted along with course activities, assignments, and projects. This course contains a “key assessment” for the EDLT program and the rubric for that assessment is designed using these competencies.







Assignments & Assessment

About Assignments

You will have the opportunity to experience a learning environment with projects and activities wherein I utilize a variety of tools and methods. Please understand that I am not asking you to learn everything that I provide for you in-depth. However, I would be doing you a disservice if I did not at least expose you to some of the wonderful tools and services available online.

All assignment instructions, and the resources needed to complete them, are listed in the Modules area of the online course room.

Discussion grading will occur on the Tuesday after the assignment is due. Big assignments and exams will be graded within 5-10 days of you turning in the assignment or exam if at all possible. If not, I will certainly explain the situation to you and provide you with a likely timeframe in which you will receive feedback.

About Assessment

Here is the breakdown of assignments in this course and how much they are worth in relation to overall points available. The Modules of this course will provide more detailed information about this. Make sure to see the weighted grades box in the Assignments tool in the course. Points and weighted percentages don't directly correlate.

Meta Note: The weighted grading is a life-saver for me because the points simply support the weighted grading system. I used to struggle with changing assignments and losing or adding points. Now I can just group the assignments and weight the groups. Also, in the course gradebook, ungraded activities count as zero to help you keep track of your end grade in the course at all times.

If you are taking this course as part of the Master of Arts in Education: Learning Design and Technology program, you must maintain the grade of "B" in all of our courses.

Projects & Activities

Brief Description


Getting Started

  • First Class Attendance or meet w/ Instructor if you miss the first class!
  • Set Up Your Tech Toolkit


Group Work & PLN Adventures

  • Tech & Communications Survey
  • Group Contract Form
  • Collaborative Social Media-Based Digital Literacy Quests
  • PLN Adventures


Technology Evaluation Article Project - Key Assessment

  • Choose 4 Multimedia/Authoring Tools to explore, share, & discuss
  • Pick 1 tool to further explore, research, evaluate, design curriculum for, and write an article about with your group.
  • Review, Revise, and Publish Articles


Choose Your Adventures

  • Website
  • Digital Storytelling
  • Design & Develop for Innovative Learning
  • Learn to Code


Instructor and Student Choice Activities

Activities and discussions based on current and emerging trends


Learner Sharing

Create a multimedia recording or presentation to share and reflect on what you learned. For Spring classes, you will present live.




Tk20 Account Purchase

In order to complete key assessments in the Master of Arts in Education: Learning Design and Technology program, all students in an EDLT program must be able to access Tk20, an online assessment and reporting system designed specifically for education programs and candidates.  The cost is $100.  This is a one-time fee that will enable you to use Tk20 not only for other College of Education courses, but after you graduate and as you transition to your professional career.  Tk20 offers many benefits.  You will be able to collect, track and retrieve your coursework in one central, web-based location.  You will also be able to develop electronic portfolios and field experience binders to assist you in job searches.  To learn more about Tk20 and to purchase your account, go to:


Late Assignment Policy

I recognize that sometimes things happen which make it difficult to complete assignments on time. So, you can turn in your assignments late - but only up to a week late and no later. Ten percent is automatically deducted for late assignments.

Exceptions to this policy are at the discretion of the instructor and may be made for certain circumstances, but you must contact me to make arrangements before the assignment is late. I will make exceptions to the prior arrangements requirement in the event of tragic events such as car accidents, a major family emergency, etc. Again, this is at the instructor's discretion.


You are responsible for Dropping or Withdrawing from this course if you find it necessary to do so.

Incomplete Grades  

For an Incomplete, you must provide evidence of a documented illness or family crisis that genuinely precludes your successful completion of the courses.

Multiple Submissions

It is important to create new work for this course. However, I will allow for existing work to be shown to me and updated. For example, if you already have a personal website, you may use it and update it to meet the criteria of this course.


Plagiarism, the passing off of others' words or ideas as your own, is unacceptable in this course and at this university. While it may be naive, I tend to think that most people end up plagiarizing because they are unfamiliar with APA or other formatting guidelines for citations and references. This course emphasizes using citations and references in the APA format to avoid plagiarism. Visit NMSU's Plagiarism and Best Practices to Avoid Plagiarism sites for some excellent resources on avoiding plagiarism. Here is the Curriculum and Instruction Statement on Plagiarism.

“Plagiarism is using another person’s work without acknowledgment, making it appear to be one’s own.  Any ideas, words, pictures or other intellectual content, taken from another source must be acknowledged in a citation that gives credit to the source.

This is true no matter where the material comes from, including the internet, other students’ work, unpublished materials, or oral sources.  Intentional and unintentional instances of plagiarism are considered instances of academic misconduct.  It is the responsibility of the student submitting the work in question to know, understand and comply with this policy.”

From http://lib.nmsu.edu/instruction/index.html 

It is the policy of the Department of Curriculum & Instruction that students found to have committed an act of plagiarism, one or more of the following consequences will occur; and, a written statement outlining the offense and consequences will be placed in the student’s permanent file by the Department Head/Hearing Officer.

  1. Failure of the course assignment;
  2. Failure of the course;
  3. Academic suspension for one or two semesters;
  4. Dismissal or expulsion from the program.

There is no statute of limitations for an act of plagiarism.  Once committed, a student can be held accountable at any time even after the semester has ended.

All students and instructors are obliged to follow the procedure for documenting the offense as described in the Student Handbook under Section II:  Academic Misconduct.  http://www.nmsu.edu/~vpss/SCOC/student_hand_book.html

Americans with Disabilities Act & Title IX Resources

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) covers issues relating to disability and accommodations. If a student has questions or needs an accommodation in the classroom (all medical information is treated confidentially), contact:

Trudy Luken, Director

Student Accessibility Services (SAS)

Corbett Center, Rm. 244

Phone: (575) 646-6840


Website: http://www.nmsu.edu/~ssd/

NMSU policy prohibits discrimination on the basis of age, ancestry, color, disability, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, retaliation, serious medical condition, sex, sexual orientation, spousal affiliation and protected veterans status.

Furthermore, Title IX prohibits sex discrimination to include sexual misconduct, sexual violence, sexual harassment and retaliation. For more information on discrimination issues, Title IX or NMSU's complaint process contact:

Gerard Nevarez, Executive Director or Agustin Diaz, Associate Director

Office of Institutional Equity (OIE)

O'Loughlin House

Phone: (575) 646-3635


Website: http://www.nmsu.edu/~eeo/

Other Important NMSU Services

NMSU Police Department, (575) 646-3311, http://www.nmsupolice.com

NMSU Police Victim Services, (575) 646-3424

NMSU Counseling Center, (575) 646-2731

NMSU Dean of Students, (575) 646-1722

For Any On-campus Emergencies, 911

Accessibility of eLearning Tools

Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act

In 1998, Congress amended the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to require Federal agencies to make their electronic and information technology (EIT) accessible to people with disabilities. Inaccessible technology interferes with an ability to obtain and use information quickly and easily. Section 508 was enacted to eliminate barriers in information technology, open new opportunities for people with disabilities, and encourage development of technologies that will help achieve these goals. The law applies to all Federal agencies when they develop, procure, maintain, or use electronic and information technology. Under Section 508 (29 U.S.C. ‘794 d), agencies must give disabled employees and members of the public access to information that is comparable to access available to others.

~Retrieved from Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.

A Voluntary Product Accessibility Template, or VPAT, is a standardized form developed by the Information Technology Industry Council to show how a software product meets key regulations of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. These are the VPATS for the primary eLearning tools in this course.

Learning Management System (CANVAS) Accessibility Statement

Canvas provides a user experience that is easy, simple, and intuitive. Special attention has been paid to making Canvas screen-readable. The Rich Content Editor encourages users to create universally accessible content. Canvas is designed to allow limited customization of colors and schemes to be accessible for all users. The National Federation of the Blind granted Canvas the Gold Level Web Certification in 2010 - https://nfb.org/node/1037.

Find more information here: http://www.instructure.com/canvas_vpat 

Emerging Technologies

In addition to the primary eLearning tools discussed previously, this course demonstrates and provides support for the use of a variety of emerging technologies. Here is the accessibility information for two of the primary additional tools:

NMSU Technology Support for Learners

Please note that support for Canvas learning management system is provided at http://learn.nmsu.edu and more resources are available on the course Homepage. For additional technical support you have two options:

  1. Post to the Course & Tech Help discussion. We are all monitoring and supporting each other in that discussion.
  2. Contact the ICT Help Desk:


Times To Contact

Before Contacting the Help Desk:

On Campus: Computer Center room 141

Phone: 575-646-1840

Email: help@nmsu.edu

Semester Hours:

  • 8am-8pm Monday through Friday,
  • 10am-3pm Saturday (not open Sunday)

Summer, Winter, & Spring Break Hours:

  • 8am-5pm Monday through Friday (not open Saturday or Sunday)

Not open administrative holidays

Know your NMSU Banner ID number (found on your NMSU ID)

Know your myNMSU username and password

Other NMSU Student Learning and Support Resources

Document Changes

We reserve the right to change syllabus, course content, and instruction to meet the needs of the learners. Thus, the instructional components of this document are subject to change. Any changes will be clearly identified by Course Announcement, color change in document, and with notification at the beginning of this document.


Blaschke, L. M. (2012). Heutagogy and Lifelong Learning: A Review of Heutagogical Practice and Self-Determined Learning. International Review of Research in Open & Distance Learning, 13(1).

Gao, P., Choy, D., Wong, A. F. L. & Wu, J. (2009). Developing a better understanding of technology-based pedagogy. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 25(5), 714-730. http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/ajet25/gao.html

Hase, S., & Kenyon, C. (2000). From andragogy to heutagogy. Ultibase Articles, 5(3), 1-10.

Kellner, D. & Kim, G. (2010). YouTube, Critical Pedagogy, and Media Activism. The Review of Education, Pedagogy, and Cultural Studies, 32(1), 3-36.

Mezirow, J. (2000). Learning as transformation: Critical perspectives on a theory in progress (pp. 3-34). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Nussbaum-Beach, S., & Hall, L. R. (2012). The connected educator: Learning and leading in a digital age. Solution Tree Press.

Scardamalia, M., & Bereiter, C. (2006). Knowledge building: Theory, pedagogy, and

technology. In K. Sawyer (Ed.), Cambridge Handbook of the Learning Sciences (pp. 97-118). New York: Cambridge University Press.

Scardamalia, M., & Bereiter, C. (2010). A Brief History of Knowledge Building. Canadian Journal of Learning & Technology, 36(1).

Siemens, G. (2005). Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age.International journal of instructional technology and distance learning, 2(1), 3-10.

Stommel , Jesse. (2012). Hybridity, pt. 2: What is Hybrid Pedagogy? Hybrid Pedagogy: A Digital Journal of Learning, Teaching, and Technology. Retrieved April 7, 2014 from http://www.hybridpedagogy.com/Journal/hybridity-pt-2-what-is-hybrid-pedagogy/ 

Vygotsky, L. S. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. M. Cole, V. John-Steiner, and E. Souberman (Editors). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.


The format and content of this syllabus is based on the collaborative efforts of many over time. Thank you to Carmen Gonzales, Bethany Bovard, Holly Rae Bemis-Schurtz, Susie Bussmann, Sandy Johnson, Mariam Abdelmalak and all my students for the support, collaborations, interactions, and synergistic activities that help me be successful in teaching and learning.                                         

Developed by Julia Parra for the College of Education and the Educational Learning Technologies (EDLT) Program                

A copy of this work is owned by New Mexico State University.

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Instructor Information | Course Description | Learning Theories & Instructional Methods | Course Competencies | Assignments & Assessments 

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