Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A Snapshot of Student Digital Culture Projects Underway

Our students' final papers and projects are well underway. Here is a snapshot:

In her project, "You Are What You Pin," Aleesha is exploring the issue of online identity and how this is mediated through pinterest. Greg is looking a lot at virtual worlds and emergent digital nations, asking how we can civilize the digital wild. Meanwhile, Paul is continuing to examine video games in terms of the larger literary tradition, claiming that certain games are "neo-romantic pieces that update the ideals of romanticism to the post-industrial state." Kelsey wants Mormons to pay attention to metadata as a way of optimizing online proselyting efforts. Kristen also explores contemporary LDS missionary work. She is creating a blog and set of digital resources for Mormon missionaries who return early from their full-time service. Mele wants to look at technology and family relationships. Lizy's interest in fandom has led her to studying the development of a fandom around Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, while Victoria is connecting fandom with education and the study of literature. Melody is thinking through what it means to be human as transhumanism and the singularity promise and threaten radical change. Brittany sees maker culture and the DIY (do-it-yourself) movement as providing people an avenue to entrepreneurialism within our increasingly digital economy. New formats for books and literature are topics being looked at by two of our group: Shelly is looking at how ebooks and e-readers are more suitable to today's youth and to changes happening in education, while Amber is reformatting Moby Dick and thinking through how new digital formats productively raise new interpretive questions for literature. How technology is influencing education is Cheri's topic. Ashley is writing on digital natives raising digital natives. Kayla is creating an ebook guide for those doing citizen journalism, while Danielle is rethinking editing in the digital age. Mary is investigating smartphones linguistically by examining the problems of speech interfaces to smartphones for those having nonstandard dialects of English. In addition, we have Kylee investigating travel in the digital age, Sam looking at how local bands in Provo have used social media, Heidi looking at gamification in the workplace; Derrick examining how producing a podcast altered his education and developed professional opportunities.