The multi-disciplinarity of visual literacy has become even more pronounced in an age of digital information. What shared questions do we ask in our research, where does our work intersect and how do those intersections define the field of visual literacy? Through an analysis of the articles published in the Journal of Visual Literacy from its inception in 1981 through 2017, this article aims to identify the research topics and questions that tie together the diverse disciplines in which visual literacy research takes place and to suggest areas for future research. Mapping the questions that drive our research can help us better define the field, better articulate the value of our scholarship and better share our work with those in the communities in which we teach and practice.
This literature review traces recent scholarship on a particular form of communication that uses images for persuasive purposes: visual rhetoric. Disciplines within the purview of this literature review include writing studies, speech, communication, education, and marketing as well as, to a limited degree, anthropology, information science, art history, architecture, and design. The chapter will discuss three main theoretical constructs which ground scholarship in this field: rhetoric, iconology, and semiotics.
This column explores the ways in which the new generation of librarians can position themselves at the front lines of the misinformation and “fake news” crisis by incorporating visual literacy and news literacy into information literacy lessons.
Agricultural literacy levels are decreasing during a time of great technological growth in the agriculture industry. Many complex ideas, such as genetically modified foods, are gaining public interest while leading to confusion. The role of agricultural literacy campaigns is to be an educational source for those seeking truthful information about such subjects. Although multiple campaigns exist, society as a whole seems to be struggling with grasping topics like genetic modification. When trying to learn such subjects, a leaner’s cognitive resources can be overwhelmed, thus hindering the learning process. The inclusion of visual aids can prevent this from occurring.
Due to the progressive visualization of everyday communication, it has become increasingly
important to understand images and think and learn in terms of images. Tere should not
be any surprise, therefore, that educators express a need to introduce visual literacy into the
curriculum. However, the concrete tools to address this need are still missing. Te variety
of visual methods and approaches provided by visual studies’ literature does not seem to be
particularly useful when applied to education. Terefore, I suggest that a focus on teaching the
interpretation of journalistic photographs is a crucial component of contemporary education,
because it develops students’ visual literacy skills while addressing current requirements
in Higher Education, which expect students to be able to interpret, use and create images.
The purpose of this exploratory, sequential, mixed methods design research was to explore current design trends and patterns in mobile application icons by analyzing existing icon elements and principles of design.
In this paper, the author describes the cultural and technological context of visual literacy, resulting from the specificity of the evolutionarily expanding culture of image and the development of the information society, in the context of the concept of transliteracy. It presents the results of pilot studies of Polish university students for specific visual skills. Comparative material for research tasks of the prepared project “The legitimacy of visual literacy in the process of education” is a set of visual literacy (Visual Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education, 2011) developed in academic and scientific environments in the USA (The Association of College and Research Libraries, ACRL).
Images are produced, used and distributed on an enormous scale. However, the skills of understanding, interpreting and using images as well as thinking and learning in terms of images are taken for granted, and thus, they are not sufficiently taught and developed, especially in higher education. The need for introducing visual literacy into the curriculum was identified in late 1960s, but no concrete guidelines have followed. This study proposes to apply interpretation of journalistic photographs as an instrument of visual literacy education. The main focus is on the image interpretation process and the kinds of meanings viewers apply to a photograph in the interpretation process. In each of the four articles included in this study, a model or approach to photography interpretation is proposed.
This paper describes the evolution of the Cultural Image Literacy Assessment-USA©. This assessment represents an important first step in measuring image literacy within a culture. Visual literacy is an integral part of all cultures. The framework used in creating an assessment of cultural image literacy in the United States could be employed in developing measures of visual literacy for other cultures.
This article describes a project at the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) Libraries in which two library staff members–a librarian and a media specialist–collaborated with a Communication Studies professor to provide assistance for two sections of an Intercultural Communication class in the creation of digital stories. As part of the course requirements, students performed service hours with community organizations and then created digital stories as a way to reflect upon and share their experiences. The project provided students with an opportunity not only to create and reflect but also to acquire digital media and visual literacy skills that may be helpful to them in future coursework and employment. In this article, the authors will describe how the digital storytelling project was designed and executed at UNR and provide guidelines for executing digital media projects to increase student engagement and to support a variety of learning objectives.
This paper describes the evolution of the Cultural Image Literacy Assessment-USA©. This assessment represents an important first step in measuring image literacy within a culture. Visual literacy is an integral part of all cultures. The framework used in creating an assessment of cultural image literacy in the United States could be employed in developing measures of visual literacy for other cultures. In so doing, image literacy can be compared within and across cultures. This survey study explores the effects today’s visual environments have on knowledge levels, and more importantly, knowledge gaps. The study builds on research relating to knowledge gap theory by describing the evolution of cultural image literacy assessment and providing current levels of image literacy within the United States.
Visual culture is becoming an increasingly prominent part of our cultural identity in the 21st century. Consequently, images have become an important tool with which to communicate science. We identify two impediments to science communicators using visual elements effectively: (1) visual material is typically treated as an add-on instead of being an integrated part of the whole and (2) there is a lack of identifying target audiences and refining visual elements for them specifically. We argue that science communicators can become more effective visual communicators if they incorporate elements of theory and practice from the discipline of design.
“A conceptualization of visual proficiency is offered. A survey is described which asked college students (N=358) to identify five photographs, five symbols, and five paintings that are generally recognized to be “famous”. About 27% of all respondents claimed to recognize all the photographs, 23% recognized all the symbols, and 3% recognized all the paintings. About 14% correctly identified all the photographs, 4% correctly identified all the symbols and only 1% correctly identified all the paintings. The findings suggest that today’s college students may be adrift in a sea of images with little ability to see beyond their own generation.”