Selected multimodal courses taught at University of Bremen and course descriptions

Designing multimedia materials for learning and teaching

This course picks up some of the current questions of material designs for teaching and learning, regarding how the uses of multimedia materials, e.g., picture books, webpages, graphic novels, film and videos, enhance or impact on students learning process. 

We will first work through selected theoretical and analytical positions derived that may be applied to understand and conduct analyses of multimodal literacy and intermedial comparisons. The students then need to select their own teaching materials for detailed analysis. We will then focus on how to make use of these materials for specific teaching purposes. Each student of this course will present a series material designs for their chosen subjects.

Issues in Audio Descriptions (AD) for visually impaired consumers

The describing of the visual content in film, television, theatre and so on, for the blind and visually impaired communities, is a rapidly emerging area of research. Several issues in the production of AD are still under critical debates: for instance, how to select narratively significant elements in the process of ADs and to what extent emotional descriptions are needed. We will first go through those issues via examining available AD materials and then use the analytical methods of filmic cohesion to explore possible strategies for the effective identification of dominant and salient narrative elements in the process of AD creation.   

Information, communication and technology in educational contexts

This course deals with several significant issues and debates with regard to using dynamic and digital media for teaching and learning. In particular, we will focus on how different subjects of science and humanities benefit from multimedia materials in different and similar ways. We will start this course with how to analyse information representation and instruction strategies. We will then examine to what degree affordances of media technologies influence the teaching and learning processes in different subjects, when these technologies are employed in the teaching materials.     


Communication design

This course focuses on the functional and cognitive principles of intermedial designs for fulfilling specific communication purposes. We will first go through theories of communication from different theoretical perspectives including pragmatics, cognition, social-cultural and ideological perspectives, and then we will explore how to integrate the knowledge from these disciplines at different levels. The second part of the course is practical and analytical. The participants should collect materials of dynamic visual materials, such as TV commercials, documentary films, educational videos, online interactive media, etc. and analyse how the specific communicative purposes are achieved drawing on the theoretical approaches introduced in the first part of the course.   

Persuasion in war and anti-war discourse in media

This course aims to unpack how the war/anti-war ideology is represented and educated to the perceivers of films, webpages, anti-war campaign posters and social media. We will first introduce methods for analysing knowledge patterns and persuasive functions across media boundaries. We will then explore how different media genres achieve emotional, immersive and persuasive purposes of anti-war ideology in different ways drawing on the different media affordances and constraints.  

Analysing genre and ideology of narratives in dynamic visual media

In the last decades, discourse analysis has `jumped the border' of the verbal mode and moved toward multimedia and multimodal artefacts. In this seminar we will cover the principal discourse approaches to textuality, addressing frameworks such as cohesion, rhetorical structure theory and introductory segmented discourse representation theory and how these approaches can be extended to analyse narrative presented in dynamic visual text such as films and interactive media. After introducing the discourse methods, we will address how these approaches can be used to construct systematic knowledge patterns for reflecting media users' narrative comprehension process and how these patterns support the systematic analysis of people's expectation and interpretation of genres and ideologies in narratives. 


Cross-cultural comparisons in media discourse

In this course we will focus on the cross-cultural perspective of communication and knowledge representation in media discourse. We will start the course with the importance of cross-cultural knowledge in the studies of education, media, language and communication research. We will then work through a set of analytical methods for different comparative dimensions of knowledge structures beyond cultural boundaries such as event structures, emotional and evaluational structures, motivational structures of people presented in media.   


The overall goal of this course is to equip students with more subtle methods for highlighting the similarities and differences of the embedded patterns of knowledge and meaning construction processes reflected in media texts from different cultures. This course will show how these knowledge patterns are otherwise not explicitly reflected without fine-grained analyses.