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Technical and Symbolic Elements of Media Arts


Unpacking Media Arts Technical and Symbolic Elements
A text may be defined as multi-modal when it combines two or more semiotic systems.
There are five semiotic systems in total:
   1. Linguistic: comprising aspects such as vocabulary, generic structure and the grammar of oral and written language
   2. Visual: comprising aspects such as colour, vectors and viewpoint in still and moving images
   3. Audio: comprising aspects such as volume, pitch and rhythm of music and sound effects
   4. Gestural: comprising aspects such as movement, speed and stillness in facial expression and body language
   5. Spatial: comprising aspects such as proximity, direction, position of layout and organisation of objects in space.'

Michèle Anstey and Geoff Bull,31522.html?issueID=12141


There are links between Viewing in the English curriculum and Media Arts.

What is distinctive about Media Arts?

What is the teaching and learnng focus of Media as art form?

Examples of visual language

Film, television and moving images use different ways of showing us visual information. For example they use framing, angles and shots:


We teach students this symbolic language.

It is important that our students develop:
  • Knowledge and understanding about reading and writing multimodal texts that are delivered in different ways (paper, live and digital electronic). Knowledge of the five semiotic systems from which a multimodal text can be composed. 
  • Metalanguage that facilitates the analysis, discussion and understanding of how multimodal texts work.
  • Explicit pedagogies that make the processes of reading and writing multimodal texts transparent.
  • Ensure that the school has a balanced, school-wide approach to the teaching of literacy and multimodal texts.
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