New Perspectives in Science Education

Edition 13


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Antonio Causarano

Institution: University of Mary Washington Department of Education

Country: United States

Antonio Causarano, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Education, College of Education, at the University of Mary Washington, Virginia USA. His research focuses on the importance of dialogic teaching in the classroom. The theoretical and methodological framework stems from Bakhtin/Volosinov theory of the utterance to investigate how literacy teachers interpret and implement the literacy curriculum across the content areas to scaffold students’ learning. A further development of this line of research is the investigation of how multimodal literacy is changing the approach to literacy instruction across the curriculum. In particular, he is investigating how digital storytelling can support struggling readers and writers in the content areas.
He is aligning his research with the framework presented by the New London Group on Multiliteracies. This framework sees literacy as foundational to support students’ effort to learn in ways that allow them to fully participate in public, community, and economic life in a complex literate society in the new millennium. Multiliteracies can support students’ learning in an increasing cultural and linguistic diverse society.
He is currently investigating how the creation of digital stories scaffolds students’ literacy learning. The overarching question is: How does Bakhtin’s theory of the utterance clarify the dialogical multimodality of texts in teaching and learning? Antonio is also developing a research framework to apply Bakhtin’s utterance in multimodal texts. The main questions guiding this line of inquiry are the following: What happens once the utterance is used in multimodal texts? How the dialogical force of the utterance does play a major role in the construction of meaning in multimodal texts?
The core of his research is to design studies that put the utterance at the center of the teaching and learning processes to become aware and understand how language supports teaching and learning in the classroom. Antonio’s research aims to support teachers and students to develop new approaches to literacy pedagogy and instruction in Multiliteracies environments. The application of the theoretical and methodological precepts of Bakhtin’s theory of the utterance to multimodal literacy will allow students to learn literacy by accessing the evolving language of the different content areas in K-12.
Antonio’s research agenda is to continue to study Bakhtin’s theory of the utterance as the unit of analysis in researching the potentialities of multimodal literacy in teaching and learning. The multimodality of the utterance is crucial to answer questions related to how the literacy landscape is changing in K-12 and how teachers support students to become critical thinkers and independent learners to read the local and global literacy demands in the 21st century.

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