Web Literacy Map-Slow Your Roll-Reflections on 12/14 Call

Sorry to open with a tired trope, but I want to date myself. Good change does not have to happen quickly, and in fact it rarely does.

Web Literacy Map v1.2, v1.5, or v2.0?

We spent the  call discussing how far and how fast to change the map

The options we discussed were:

v1.2add links to Mozilla Manifesto where appropriate

v1.5as v1.2 + make changes to some competencies after 2015 discussions

v2.0as v1.5 + act on feedback from LRA conference + explore other ways of representing the map

Much of this debate focused on the Protecting strand rejoining the Map. This strand was deprecated in late 2012 and early 2013. The Snowden era changed all of this. There is a general sense amongst the Mozillians working on the Web Literacy Map that we have to highlight this explicitly.

The Protecting Strand

I am currently leaning against adding the protecting strand. To me it is a core value that cuts across the Web Literacy Map. That is why the map defers from past frameworks used to explore our transition from print to pixel. These efforts sought to Understand the web. The Web Literacy Map seeks to Build and Protect the web. This can only be done through efforts to #teachtheweb and the benefits of open.

I think we do need to write some supporting documents abut the values of the Web Literacy Map and the design principles of how to #teachtheweb. We are trying to create a dynamic model within the affordances of texts and images and we lose some meaning along the way. We have been getting some pushback about how we are focused solely on a skills (which many interpet as a deficit) model of literacy.

The Ever Forking Framework

I also believe the Version 1.1 has not been in the Wild long enough for us to garner feedback. Furthermore changing the Map while many are implementing it for the first time can cause a drop in active user conversion.

Someone in the call mentioned this could be handled by having different clubs, groups, and versions aligned to different version of the Map. If we want to be the Android of education I am okay with that. We can have multiple legacy versions flying around and very few webmakers using the latest version.

In fact you already see this within the webmaker community. When you read a summary of changes to Version 1.1 of the map it is noted that no decision has been made on renaming the strands reading, writing, and participating. Though I support this change I did not know it had been made. Yet when you read discussion boards about the upcoming webmaker clubs we consistently refer to the strands of reading, writing, and participating.

Cursor_and_Testing__How_we_ll_test_the_club_curriculum_-__TeachTheWeb_Discussion

 

This is why I also favor a 1.5 release versus a full blown 2.0 release. Altering the Web Literacy Map and trying to develop curriculum at the same time makes no sense from an instructional design point of view. It was brought up on the MoPad from the call that these two efforts do not influence each other but that is almost impossible. If a club is how we are going to #teachtheweb and there are badges connected to competencies and learning pathways that connect back to the Map then changes to the Map affect the clubs.

We have some feedback from the community on how the map needs to evolve. Lets make these changes now so they can be baked into the learning pathways used by the badging community and the #teachtheweb community. Then later, possibly Q3/Q4 of this year, we can use feedback from the A/B club testing to inform the full Web Literacy Map 2.0 development.

Changes I would like to see made in Web Literacy Map 1.5

  • Lets rename the whole project Open Web Literacies Map-Focusing on open strengthens the connections to the Mozilla Manifesto. It also allows us to address those who believe web literacy involves simply WYSIWYG publishing in content silos. Finally we must recognize the muliliteracies by moving to a plural.
  • Lets attend to aesthetic design-We need to get to the affordances of images and video to support meaning. We need more competencies in the writing-building strand. This may mean we have more competencies or skills in one strand and not the other. That is okay. Lets not let a love for symmetrical design impeded our work.
  • We need to add some more criticality to the credibility strand-We can talk about consumerism, ownership, and data a little bit here in terms of understanding how power shapes “truth.”

Disagree with me-PLEASE

I am so happy my schedule will allow me to attend the calls this upcoming semester. I love this project. Whether you agree or disagree with me I hope you choose to get involved. The entire development of the Web Literacy Map is community based and done in the open. Join a community call. Reach out on twitter with the #teachtheweb hashtag, join the Google+ group, join us at discourse.webmakers.org or become a mentor and try out the map in your neck of the world.

We get the web we build. Will you help?

Greg McVerry

Greg McVerry is a teacher, researcher and scholar at Southern Connecticut State University.

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