Transmedia Storytelling as an Educational Strategy: A Prototype for Learning English as a Second Language

Transmedia Storytelling as an Educational Strategy: A Prototype for Learning English as a Second Language

Patricia Rodrigues (Universidade Aberta, Research Centre for Arts and Communication (CIAC), Lisbon, Portugal) and José Bidarra (Universidade Aberta, Research Centre for Arts and Communication (CIAC), Lisbon, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/IJCICG.2016070105
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Abstract

This paper proposes the use of transmedia storytelling in an educational context. Transmedia stories are perceived as opportunities to create a new learning scenario that allows for the development of innovative student-centred educational practices, and the implementation of collaborative strategies that ultimately meet the 21st-century students' needs. Through the discussion of a transmedia learning project targeted to English as Second Language students, this paper attempts to provide insight on how learning activities and strategies can be embedded in the digital narrative and experience layers of a storyworld.
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The Project's Goals

Connecting Cat is part of an ongoing research concerning the creation of a transmedia learning environment in the context of ESL learning. It is targeted to Portuguese 10th-grade students, 16-year-old teenagers. Connecting Cat's storyworld is designed to be the setting of exploration of contents and curricular goals of ESL, level B1, according to CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages). The project uses a multilayered combination of audiovisual elements within a storyworld to shed light on the topics: media culture, multiculturalism, linguistic diversity and use of technology. The storyworld is constructed to allow expansion and dynamic personalization of its elements while enhancing the development of communication and media literacy skills.

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