The course is an introductory course on the creative aspects of the mass media, media art, new media and popular culture. The course aims to enhance students’ creative, aesthetic as well as intellectual ability of evaluating different media art forms and expression. Students are expected to experiment and question the assumptions behind the production of the various media arts and other media forms. The course covers art theory, aesthetics, theories on creativity, various forms of productions and culture.
Upon finishing the course, students are expected to be able to acquire preliminary knowledge on production of creative media, critically evaluate different media forms, and implement their creative ideas.
When the teacher set the learning objectives, he was aware of the need to internationalize the curriculum to cater to the students of different cultural backgrounds. The teacher also had a high level of awareness on students’ diversity and set objectives that could heighten student’s intercultural awareness.
The teacher made use of European and American theories on teaching creative media and new media and consulted internationally recognized readings when he designed the course. In the initial stage of the course design, the teacher consulted western references and renowned overseas universities on how to teach creativity. A carefully considered and well balanced glocal curriculum design is evident. large proportion of international examples were used in designing the course materials while a small proportion of local examples were used to allow the international students to know more about creative industries in Hong Kong. Novel examples were of great importance to inspire students’ creativity and to expose students to a global environment.
The three assignments were designed with no locational/spatial constraint. Students were given complete autonomy to decide a preferred cultural context in the three assignments including a one-minute video, a radio drama script, and a photo essay. International examples were given to showcase different plausibility in completing the assignments.
Teacher-assigned grouping enables a more diverse and vibrant exchange of ideas because students from the same culture or nationality could have an opportunity to interact with international students. Small-class tutorial also allows students to be more expressive and can grasp the idea of how to be a global citizen in an easier way because students could have more opportunity to interact with the teacher/tutor. Experiential learning was also applied in the course to let students interpret the idea of how to be a global citizen. Through self-reflection on who they were, students learnt what it meant to be a global citizen. E-learning was also a practical tool to design internationalized student activities which allowed students to learn on their own pace.
The teacher found that inadequate funding in the beginning made internationalization of the curriculum more difficult. The medium of instruction (MOI) also posed a constraint on internationalization of the curriculum because some local examples were difficult to be explained in English. International examples used in the course materials also require more resources, for example, the use of local footages without English subtitles was less effective in teaching and learning. The design of the course COMM2922A has been modified and become more internationalized over more than ten years. The process of internationalization of curriculum can be a long and slow process. IoC may not be achievable without teachers’ dedication in reflecting and reviewing their own course design and implementation.
Since COMM2922A Introduction to Creative and New Media is by nature an internationalized course, the teachers of other courses with highly localized subject matters may not find the necessity in internationalizing their courses. In such cases, it is advisable that the teachers could consult the transferable internationalized components to apply on designing the assignments and students activities, allowing students to reflect on their own concept and culture and take a comparative approach to perceive other cultures. COMM2922A can be highly internationalized because there is a plethora of readily available international examples and theories to use in designing the course materials.
COMM2922B is taught by Professor Eric Poon. The difference between COMM2922A and COMM2922B is that in Class B, most students are local Hong Kong students and a few mainland students instead of a majority of international students. The medium of instruction of Class B is Cantonese while Class A is taught in English. The course materials are the same in the two courses. For Class B, Prof Poon shared the same view that for course material design and the text content, it was impossible to use only local references, especially in teaching the subject on New Media and Creativity. He held the view that it was his personal habit to think with an international perspective and bring in local context when he saw fit. In order to allow students to develop a broader world view and have an eye-opening experience, this introductory course prepared students to collaborate and break from their traditional way of thinking. Students were encouraged to think outside the box and try to establish a new angle to express stories through visual and audio means. Hence, students were asked to produce photo essay and one-minute video for in-class screening after having ample input of internationalized examples on how to do photography and videotaping. Another example is that for student assessments, students could choose to write in English or Chinese. This, however, led to a problem in an internationalized curriculum when the medium of instruction is not the first language, there could be misinterpretation or incomplete interpretation after translation between L1 and L2. Hence, language is identified as a major blocker in implementing an IoC.
14 out of 16 required readings are western references (American and British authors in majority)
2 out of 16 required readings are Asian references (Taiwan)
6 out of 10 films are documentary directed by directors from different countries including Germany, Netherland, America, Switzerland, and Britain.
One of the selected films, “Valtari Film Experiment” (2013), is a compilation of 16 music videos based on songs of Sigur Ros, an Icelandic singer. The 16 videographers are of diverse nationality including 4 Icelanders, 4 Americans, 1 Israeli American, 1 Swedish, 1 Hongkonger, 1 Russian, 1 Irish, 1 British, and 1 American Chinese.