My Journal



ATTW Conference Presentation Proposal

Here is the proposal I am submitting for the 2009 ATTW Conference:

Simulating Synchronicity in the Online Classroom Through Embedded Audio-Visual Discussions

Many technical communication instructors employ video tools within the online classroom to present information to students, often requiring students to also use such tools. Online video Web sites, such as YouTube, Seesmic, and Viddler provide students and instructors with a repository to which they can upload, store, and present instructional videos.

The proposed presentation considers a specific online educational use of It critically examines the ability to add to the timeline of recorded videos textual/hypertextual comments and–more important to this presentation–video comments. This ability to embed video comments in recorded videos creates a recorded conversation that, when framed in Kathleen Welch’s Isocratic literacy theory, can be seen as a markedly unique rhetorical situation. Such an embedded audio-visual discussion ceases to be linear and is clearly not synchronous. However, it transcends the asynchronous situation, simulating the synchronous environment with the interactive, communicative, human elements of its delivery. Yet, this discussion format retains the asynchronous benefit of recollection, backlooping, and portability.

This presentation reports the results of this technology applied in an online multimedia writing class in Arizona State University’s Multimedia Writing and Technical Communication program, including the strategies used to achieve student engagement and assessment suggestions. Also considered is the way that this technology bridges certain communicative gaps existent in online discussions, such as the difficulty in accurately expressing and detecting emotion and intent.

Based on Walter J. Ong’s established theories of orality, the study looks beyond secondary and electronic orality and places the application of this technology in a realm of “digital orality.” In this frame, it considers the rhetorical situation and epistemic setting of the embedded audio-visual discussion and the effect they may have on our current understanding of online instruction. Additionally, the study suggests areas of further research and application of the embedded audio-visual discussion.

    • Nathan
      Oct 30, 2008 at 4:53 PM /

      Sounds like something I’d want to attend! Good luck!