As the semester comes to an end, I must say farewell to my time spent learning and exploring digital communications.
My finals thoughts about digital communications revolve around what I believe it means to be “digitally literate”.
My generation has grown up in a world where technology is constantly becoming more complex, diverse, and cutting-edge. The digital realm is a space almost everyone has frequented. I believe having digital literacy means you are knowledgable, experienced, and adept with digital media in today’s society. Glynda Hull, professor of Language and Literacy, Society and Culture states in her definition of digital literacy, “Ours is an age in which technologies for multimedia, multi-modal authorship proliferate, challenging logo centric habits of mind…”
Throughout my journey working with digital communications, I have embraced the perspective of the “inside-looking-out”, rather than the “outside-looking-in”. By this I simply mean that I have experienced an insiders-view on being the creator of the media, instead of being the audience. To be a successful media producer, there are certain elements that build the framework for digital literacy:
- Self Branding
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- User experience
How you choose to brand yourself plays a major role in the development of your digital work. This is how you let your personality shine through your work. You are the designer, the planner, the visionary. You get to decide what you create and how to go about doing so.
For example, in my blog, Ashley’s Appetite, I designed it in a way that felt fun and light-hearted. I wanted my food blog to be friendly, and inviting. All of the food images on my blog were taken by myself. I think is an important aspect of my blog, because it not only shows that I am just focused on food and nutrition, but I also want to be creative and document my love for food.
Editing is also a huge aspect of media development and requires a large skill set to do so. There are a plethora of different editing tools found in different multimedia programs that allow you to enhance your work and sharpen it up for your audience. Great quality is admired, whereas poor quality is instantaneously noticed.
In both my personal video and my group video, the majority of the time spent working on the project was devoted to editing. My teammates and I wanted to created the best work we could offer. In order to do so, we were constantly making changes by fine tuning the audio, video and overall quality.
I believe SEO works hand in hand with user experience. Now that I have been a user of media as well as a creator of media, I understand the importance of making sure the media you display is accessible, easy to navigate, simple, and enjoyable. In my blog and website, I made sure to include multiple hyperlinks so that reader/viewers could explore the topics I was addressing. I also included tabs at the top of my sites so my content is clearly organized.
Throughout this course I have gained an abundance of skills that will be beneficial in my future endeavors. I have learned how to use a number of different tools such as Adobe Photoshop Elements, Adobe Premiere Elements, WordPress, and more. I had experience prior to the course with video and iMovie, however, certain assignments gave me the opportunity to improve my skills further.
Although I am not a communications major, I plan on continuing to advance my skills with digital media and apply it to my passion for health sciences.