Selection and use of Media
The Selection of Media
attempt to select the best combination of media for education is an on going
process, in all parts of the world. Classroom teachers are deciding what methods are best to get
the information they are about to teach to their students’, if they should use
video, computer or still picture, in explaining a given task.
Those decisions will have comparatively little impact on the educational
system as a whole although they may make a great difference in an individual
class (Scramm 1977 p.20)
committee of teachers, technologists, and producers of the Open University have
to face the decision of how many half-hours of television to request for a
course just being designed. This
decision is much larger than those for the classroom teachers, because one
period of television cost a large sum of money and will be seen by thousands of
of really big decisions in media selection is like the case of India .
India had been using mostly what could be called Little Media -puppets,
filmstrips, and radio to reach to its largely illiterate village people.
In 1976 the Indian government made the decision to change the method of
reaching this illiterate people and took up using a satellite (AST-6) with which
to beam educational and development television into 2,400 of its remote
villages. From puppets to direct
satellite broadcasting is 5,000 years in time and millions of dollars in cost
(Scramm 1977 p.20).
decisions about media selection require assumptions about the task effect and
In the selection of the instructional media, Romiszowski(1997) says that
the main categories of factors that may influence the choice of media are:
1 Task factors- the type of
objectives, and hence the type of learning activities which should be provided
for the learner.
2 Learner factors- some
learners may learn better from certain media than from
factors- this may limit the choice in practice. (p.57)
In his book
“The Selection and Use of Instructional Media”(1997) he gives many samples,
charts and procedure for lesson design, concentrating particularly on selection
and presentation of media. He
offers a framework, based on a particular view of the instruction process, which
should enable the teacher to set about designing lesson plans which have ´ a
fair chance of being successful´.
distance teaching institutions, the deployment of different media for different
topics and learning task is controlled more by logistic, economic and human
factors than by pedagogical considerations.
One reason for this is that user- friendly pedagogical criteria have not
been developed to date; at least, there is no consensus on the adequacy of any
existing selection models. Another
reason is the false impression, conveyed by media comparison research, of
equipotentialality between media” says
Jack Koumi in his article “Media comparison and deployment” written in
British Journal of Educational Technology 1994.
In this article he argues that because the research on comparative
efficacy of media has been flawed, giving a false impression of
equipotentialality between media, the need for workable criteria for optimal
media deployment has been underestimated. He proposes a framework to help course developers to design
such media selection procedures (Koumi, 1994 p.,41). He considers five media in depth: radio and TV (broadcast),
audio and video (cassette, with complementary notes) and print.
These are then match briefly with computer-based media.
The analysis reflects on six types of media characteristics: symbol system, access, controllability, student reactivity,
interactivity, adaptivity. Jack
Koumi developed this framework collaboratively over several years with the help
of theorists and practitioners in international seminar and workshops.
comparing media it is common to appraise each medium for both its strengths and
weakness, for example, print is rather impersonal, whereas audio-visual media
can portray the teacher in person. This
pair of evaluation can be considered as a single comparison: personalising the
teacher is a merit of audio-visual media compared to print (Koumi, 1994 p.,45).
Koumi built up a list of such comparative merits which are shown in Table
2 (see as one of the papers at the back). This
table does not include the computers. There
are many varieties of computerbased media,
which are (potentially) more controllable, interactive and adaptive,
although problem of access can arise.
a list for TV/video: distinctive ways, to help learning :
that cognitive objectives can be facilitated through the eight media-
distinctive techniques shown beneath. That
is, these techniques can only be achieved successfully with medium as TV which
has diagrammatic and real-life moving pictures accompanied by sound effect and
e.g. split screen and superimposition, can
synthetic, analytic and discrimination skills.
Visual metaphors for abstract
process e.g. specially concocted physical
animation, in effect implant the teacher’s imagery into
minds - thereby supplanting other, ineffectual mental process.
Modelling a dynamic process
with a contrived, simplified version that
encapsulates salient features such as animation for chemistry.
encapsulation of salient features hopes to prime students for the full
variable situation/process: changing the parameter values can
students to explore various version of the process (e.g. through
animation, drama), such as what would
happen if the ceiling of the coal
collapsed ahead of the men behind them?
abstract concepts with evocative, palpable real-world
time by pruning real-world process (i.e. editing out non-
salientevents) bringing the duration within the viewer’s concentration
by a teacher or role-model of technical, logical or social
skills, by handling
equipment, symbols or people. The
objective is for the
student to achieve
skills such as manipulating a home experiment kit,
equation, learning a foreign language.
power : precise control over what the learner experiences in pictures,
sound effects and words (including intonation and phrasing),
sequence, structured into an educationally digestible story
objectives can be acquired by showing/documenting other wise inaccessible so
here is another list for TV and video, providing realistic experience:
a places (e.g.:
factories, undersea, overseas locations);
(e.g.: aerial views, microscopy);
c complex or
large-scale technical process or equipment, with synchronous
objects: by moving the object or the camera and/or by
hand exploring the space;
motion (e.g. slow motion of animal actions, fast action of clod
animals interacting, real-life or drama: e.g. interviews´ body
events (including the use of archive film/audio);
h dynamic change
sequence and duration (important in e.g. sequence and
pacing of body
language and pauses for interviewing skills, progress of
reactions, fluid dynamics) (Koumi, 1994, p.,50).
is also a list of some typical classes of objectives in these domains for which
TV/video can play a particular part, because of the rich symbol system, which
gives TV such realism (also true of radio/audio to an extent):
of the above potentials of TV and video hold equally well for radio and audio.
has been found to be both liked and effective: a teacher can demonstrate
technical/logical skills, and /or guide students in achieve such skills, by
talking through equations, flow-charts, architectural plans and so on.
Many topics and teaching functions benefit from the use of pictures but
do not need moving pictures. For these topics, audio vision can be
cost-effective alternative to video (Koumi, 1994, p.,52).
provides three-stage scheme for approaching media selection it is:
List comparative merits and distinctive teaching functions.
Device a procedure for media deployment based on your list.
Fully exploits the potential of each medium.
students will not learn from some media in some situations.
This results statistically in a dilution of differential media effects.
These students can be helped in multiplying the media presentation to
accommodate the individual differences in learning style.
argues that there does not exist an adequately practicable theory for selecting
media appropriate to given topics, learning tasks and target populations and the
most common practise is not to use a model at all.
So there is no wonder that allocation of media has been controlled more
by practical, economic and human/political factors than by pedagogic
Roundstone the band see their site here
Some photos from Iceland see here
Sólrún B. Kristinsdóttir © 2001 Síðast uppfært 21.10.2008