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This paper reports the key findings of a critical ethnography, which documented the enactment of the multiliteracies pedagogy in an Australian elementary school classroom. The multiliteracies pedagogy of the New London Group is a response to the emergence of multimodal literacies in contemporary contexts of increased cultural and linguistic diversity. Giddens’ structuration theory was applied to the analysis of systems relations. The key finding was that students, who were culturally and linguistically diverse, had differential access to multiliteracies. Existing degrees of access were reproduced among the student cohort, based on the learners’ relation to the dominant culture. Specifically, students from Anglo-Australian, middle-class backgrounds had greater access to transformed designing than those who were culturally or socio-economically marginalized. These experiences were influenced by the agency of individuals who were both enabled and constrained by structures of power within the school and the wider educational and social systems.


Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education

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Journal Article

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