Designs for learning about film spectatorship

Andrew Morrison, Andrew Deacon, Jane Stadler


Learning about narrative and spectatorship in film studies lends itself to active forms of learning. This article reports on the participatory development between film studies and learning design of an activity called Director's Cut. A class of 250 undergraduate students created their own film sequence applying their understandings of genre, screenwriting and editing in order to manipulate how film spectators relate to screen characters. The model of expansive learning provides a frame for understanding an emergent, developmental design and learning process. Adaptive design is included so as to refer to the incorporation of prior knowledge from related projects as well as changes made during designing and through use. Key aspects of the interface, interaction design and students' comments on the use of it are included. We argue that there are links to be made between approaches to participatory design and 'designs for learning' rather than learning designs as templates for compliance. We close by discussing the continued evolution of the activity design, some wider issues for designing for learning, and ways of adapting related interfaces so as to be able to mediate the work online.

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