ETEC 531: Curriculum Issues in Cultural and New Media Studies


This course explores the role new media technologies can and might play in education and curriculum. From oral to text-based communication and content consumption to content creation, media has done much to shape the way we live, learn, and engage in formal and informal educative spaces. In an ever-expanding media-driven society, change is ubiquitous, and literacies are emergent. Digital media, then, presents strategic opportunities for educators to engage with and ask questions about curriculum. Specifically, we will ask how curriculum informs the ways knowledge is produced, taken up, mediated, and remediated in educational spaces.

We will examine new media and technology and its implications from a knowledge production perspective. What are the social and cultural effects of media for current educational practices? What is the nature of technological innovation and change in educative spaces? Together, we will examine media representation and its uses to gain perspective on its political, economic, material, and cultural significance in contemporary society. ETEC 531 asks students to consider:

  • The relationship between education, technological innovation, and change.
  • How curriculum shapes our understandings of self, society, and the world around us.
  • How we might engage media to foster anti-oppressive frameworks used for teaching and learning.

Reflecting upon the pedagogical and curricular possibilities created through new media, we will examine a selection of media platforms and artifacts. Utilizing theoretical and creative engagements, we will explore the cultural affordances of new media in relation to knowledge and curriculum. Such explorations include the role of new media in changing and/or maintaining social and cultural inequities and its implications for education. For example, what does it mean to “ask” and to “answer” in a world of algorithmic research? What are our relationships to “truth,” “ethics,” and “representation?” How might we shape educational contexts that encourage critical engagement and inclusive practices alongside the social practices of new media?

Course Objectives

  • Develop a framework for understanding the role of curriculum as related to and impacted by new media and technology.
  • Apply theoretical, conceptual, and methodological frameworks to anti-oppressive approaches for curriculum development and pedagogical practices.
  • Examine ethics, fair use, data politics, and demographic inequities in the context of learning and new media.
  • Practice curricular and pedagogical integrations of new media technologies.

Example Readings & Resources

This course uses a selection of readings available online via the Library Online Course Reserves (LOCR) as well as select videos, social media spaces, and digital artifacts.

  • Benjamin, R. (2019). Race after technology: Abolitionist tools for the new Jim code. Polity Press.
  • Bigo, D., Isin, E., & Ruppert, E. (Eds.). (2019). Data politics. Routledge.
  • Buckingham, D. (2019). The media education manifesto. John Wiley & Sons.
  • Tuck, E. & Gaztambide-Fernandez, R. (2013). Curriculum, replacement, and settler futurity. Journal of Curriculum Theorizing, 29(1), 72-89.