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Multiliteracies for a Digital Age
1st Edition
Stuart A. Selber
$35.00
Paper
0-8093-2551-9
978-0-8093-2551-1
288 pages, 5.5 x 8.5
1/23/2004

About the Book

Just as the majority of books about computer literacy deal more with technological issues than with literacy issues, most computer literacy programs overemphasize technical skills and fail to adequately prepare students for the writing and communications tasks in a technology-driven era. Multiliteracies for a Digital Age serves as a guide for composition teachers to develop effective, full-scale computer literacy programs that are also professionally responsible by emphasizing different kinds of literacies and proposing methods for helping students move among them in strategic ways.

 

Defining computer literacy as a domain of writing and communication, Stuart A. Selber addresses the questions that few other computer literacy texts consider: What should a computer literate student be able to do? What is required of literacy teachers to educate such a student? How can functional computer literacy fit within the values of teaching writing and communication as a profession? Reimagining functional literacy in ways that speak to teachers of writing and communication, he builds a framework for computer literacy instruction that blends functional, critical, and rhetorical concerns in the interest of social action and change.

 

Multiliteracies for a Digital Age reviews the extensive literature on computer literacy and critiques it from a humanistic perspective. This approach, which will remain useful as new versions of computer hardware and software inevitably replace old versions, helps to usher students into an understanding of the biases, belief systems, and politics inherent in technological contexts. Selber redefines rhetoric at the nexus of technology and literacy and argues that students should be prepared as authors of twenty-first-century texts that defy the established purview of English departments. The result is a rich portrait of the ideal multiliterate student in a digital age and a social approach to computer literacy envisioned with the requirements for systemic change in mind.


Authors/Editors

Stuart A. Selber is an assistant professor of English at The Pennsylvania State University. He is the editor of Computers and Technical Communication: Pedagogical and Programmatic Perspectives and the coeditor of Central Works in Technical Communication.


Reviews

“Over the past several years, I’ve read dozens of books on digital rhetoric, digital media, online communication, new media, and the like. None of them is as stimulating or as important to our understanding of online literacy as Multiliteracies for a Digital Age. Selber reviews, critiques, and synthesizes an immense body of research—which is impressive in itself—and then goes on to develop a post-critical approach. The significance of this approach is that it emphasizes the social scene for computer-based writing, offering a contextual view of technology that challenges the predominant instrumental views. This is breakthrough work, showing how technology theory should matter to literacy scholars and teachers.”—Jim Porter, Michigan State University

Awards

Computers and Composition's Distinguished Book Award (2005)
NCTE Award for Best Book in Technical and Scientific Communication (2005)

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