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Visual Literacy in Teacher Education: Examining the Complexity of Online Images for Instructional and Personal Purposes

, , George Mason University, United States

Journal of Technology and Teacher Education Volume 29, Number 4, ISSN 1059-7069 Publisher: Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education, Waynesville, NC USA

Abstract

Although students and adults alike are constantly exposed to visuals both online and offline, merely being exposed to visuals does not guarantee visual literacy (Kedra & Zakeviciute, 2019). This study explored K12 teachers’ perceptions regarding their personal and instructional use of online images as well as the influence of a visual literacy unit of study on their Internet usage and instructional practice. Findings indicated teachers primarily share online images including memes and personal photographs with close friends and family through social media outside of school. However, the visual literacy unit of study helped them to become more skeptical of online images, more aware of strategies to evaluate online images, and further analyze the composition of images. While teachers stated they typically integrate visuals into lessons as a form of representation, the visual literacy unit of study influenced them to incorporate images more intentionally, implement different digital tools, give students more flexibility in their learning, and widened their definition of literacy. Recommendations include aspects related to providing teacher education opportunities incorporating critical lenses, content area pedagogy, and explicit image evaluation strategies.

Citation

Korona, M. & Hathaway, D. (2021). Visual Literacy in Teacher Education: Examining the Complexity of Online Images for Instructional and Personal Purposes. Journal of Technology and Teacher Education, 29(4), 533-557. Waynesville, NC USA: Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education. Retrieved August 7, 2022 from .