Defining Remediation in Multiple Classes


I often find it funny how every semester, no matter what classes I am taking, my course topics always seem to overlap in someway. Currently, I am studying for a huge exam in my Communications 381 class (where the professor kindly decided to make an exam and paper each worth 20% of our grade due on the same day, this Thursday) and one of my vocabulary terms to know for the exam is Remediation. In the context of a communications term, remediation is described as “a process in which the aesthetic practices of a new medium influence the aesthetics of an older medium.” I think although that remediation project for this writing course is referring to something different than how we discuss remediation in communications classes, the same basic concept for our remediation project still applies: we are taking our re-purposing paper and it’s basic argument, premise, audience, and maybe even part of it’s aesthetics, and changing it to a new medium. Although the difference is we are not simply letting the aesthetics of a NEW medium INFLUENCE our OLD medium, we are just taking the “old” medium’s purpose.

This communications definition of remediation definitely relates more to what we are doing than the definition of remediation from the dictionary: “the action of remedying something, in particular of reversing or stopping environmental damage.” Although we are changing something, I do not believe we are making one or the other better; we are conveying the same points in both for the same audience. What I think though for our remediation is we are making our argument to different kind of learners. For example, we can change a written essay into something more visual, so more visual learners will understand and retain our points more. Or we can change a visual piece into something more for audio learners, so people who learn through listening will be more interested in our work.

I think I want to do the latter—making my written magazine article in to an audio podcast. Although I am interested in media and am excited for the completion of a hard copy of a new medium format style of argument, I am also worried. I have never done something new media and am at a loss of where to begin. Although I know I want to do a Podcast, then again I do not know how to format how to write a podcast, how to storyboard a podcast, or even how record a podcast. Ah, the initial feelings of stress that comes from all new assignments.

2 thoughts to “Defining Remediation in Multiple Classes”

  1. Worry not–U of M has workshops and many, many people (including me, of course) who can help you make your first podcast. I have every faith in you! 🙂

  2. I’m somewhat in the same boat about new project anxiety. I keep changing my mind about what I want to do for the re-mediation project. (The objection I keep running into for podcasts is I hate the sound of my recorded voice…)

    Also, isn’t it cool how stuff ties together in college? For this re-purposing project I’m using a paper from an Intro to Lit Studies class, knowledge from Intro to Communications, and sources from Decolonization in the Pacific. Who’d have thought I could stick those all together in an even remotely coherent way? Maybe it’s my inner geek talking, but I think that is so cool.

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