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Over a period of three years, the ‘3D multimodal authoring pedagogy’ research project engaged middle years students from 48 classes in a structured program introducing them to techniques for effective story-telling (narrative composition) using multimedia software. To enable us to better understand the capabilities of the students as they entered the program, they completed a self-report of their knowledge of multimodal ‘design elements’. An analysis of the results from one year of the study (5 schools, 19 classes and 326 students) indicates that students are relatively uninformed about how to communicate meaning effectively using multimedia software, even amongst classes taught by teachers who are enthusiastic and committed to multimodal authoring. Significant gender and year level differences were identified. These results have important implications for ICT education, which values purposeful communication over a de-contextualised repertoire of skills, along with literacy education which, in the Australian Curriculum, includes the creation of multimodal texts.

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Conference Paper

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