Durham: MediaLit

CODEC will be holding its sixth MediaLit training course from 8th to 12th June 2015 exploring Christian ministry and the media

Previous MediaLit courses, held annually since 2010 (see ‘Related Links’), have been greatly valued by the participants – ministerial students/ordinands, ministers, media professionals, diocesan and district communications officers.

MediaLit is open to anyone interested in engaging with the media – mass media, broadcast media, social media, community media, with a core group of ordinands at Cranmer Hall partaking in the course. You do not need to know how to ‘do technology’ to partake in the course – simply be willing to partake in discussions and activities.

I am the current course convenor, and will be teaching sessions on digital culture and digital literacy.

Book with CODEC

[Conference Abstract] MediaLit: Engaging Faith and Media in a Digital Age #ECSM15

Keywords: Social Media, Learning and Teaching, Mature Learners, Digital Age, CPD

medialit15-250MediaLit is a week-long conference held at St John’s College (Durham), designed for those training for Christian leadership and those already engaged in Christian ministry. The course explores Christian ministry and the media, encouraging media literacy amongst those who (will) hold public positions within and related to the Christian church. This intensive conference, deliberately kept small, has attracted 18-30 delegates per year since 2010, with delegates including ministerial students, ordinands, ministers, media professionals and diocesan and district communications officers. The course addresses media as a whole, including mass media, broadcast media, social media and community media.

Delegates are reassured that they do no need to know how to ‘do technology’ to partake in the course, but are encouraged to engage with the learning opportunities provided via social media, through both discussion and practice. For the last five years, a hashtag based Twitterfall (wall of tweets) has run in the sessions, which has encouraged a large number of delegates to develop their own (on-going) Twitter profiles, as well as conversation as to the nature, purpose, benefits and drawbacks of both the Twitterfall’s presence in the classroom, Twitter’s reach beyond the classroom, and what this means more widely about digital culture, and our contemporary age.

The overall structure of the programme is focused upon learning and teaching outcomes. Students are expected to gain an understanding of media theory, theology, and practice within a digital age through interaction, participation and engagement, especially facilitated peer-to-peer conversation. The majority of students are mature students with life experience from a range of sectors to share. Using an andragogical approach, the learner’s background is viewed as an essential component to both what they learn, and what they can contribute to the cohort’s learning.  Feedback from 2014 included:

If you want to be challenged in your thinking; be at the cutting edge of thought in media literacy, experience discussion and practical sessions on creativity and broadcasting you need to be at MediaLit15!

Social media also offers scope beyond the immediate classroom, including live blogging sessions as reflective practice and/or to reach a wider audience, opportunities to collate outputs via Storify or Epilogger, lists of wider reading and films, and the opportunity to continue conversations for group alumni via a Facebook group. This session will reflect upon the course, and how it has developed in order to provide the strongest learning outcomes for each cohort, as media continues to change.

For the European Conference on Social Media (5,000 word paper due by 5 Feb, conference in July).

A Reflection on the First #MediaLit Course

“Have you ever wondered how the media works, or watched a TV programme and asked yourself what values underpin it? Ever pondered the ethics of media production and consumption?  Is there a theology of communication? How might the church engage with and support those who work in the media? Ever thought about how the national church engages with the media? How do church press offices work? Could your local church engage more effectively with the media? What might the digital future look like? How might social networking develop? Today Twitter and FaceBook,  tomorrow…?

MediaLit gave the opportunity to explore all these issues and more. Based in the wonderful setting of St John’s College, Durham,  MediaLit was a week long, intensive course – both hands on and theoretical – which brought together media practitioners, journalists, the Churches Media Council, those exploring how to use social media in relation to Christian faith, trainee ministers, vicars and other interested parties.”

Read the full reflection by Kate Bruce and indicate your interest in future MediaLit courses. Find Kate on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/johnschaplain

Guest Post on @thechurchmouse #medialit

“A few days ago Pete Phillips from CODEC guest blogged on the Church and Media Network Conference, and mentioned an upcoming course organised by CODEC and the Church and Media Network, called as MediaLit.  The course describes itself as “an opportunity for first class training and resources in media for ministry for those engaged in formal pre-ordination training, those already engaged in local or national ministry and anyone concerned to connect Christian faith with communication in a digital age. ”

MediaLit has now taken place, and Mouse wanted to bring it to your attention.  Below is a guest post from Dr Bex Lewis on what it was all about.  Bex has a PhD in Second World War posters (http://ww2poster.co.uk), teaches History & Media Studies, whilst working on Blended Learning projects for the Universities of Winchester & Durham.”

Read the full post here.

How Preparing A Sermon is Similar to Writing Blog Posts

Darren Rowse, now Problogger:

“On Sunday I preached a sermon at my local church. I used to do this weekly when I worked as a minister years ago – but it’s been a while since I had to do it (funnily enough I find it a lot more nerve wracking getting up in front of a couple of hundred people to speak than writing a post for tens of thousands!).

As I was preparing for preaching last week it struck me how similar my ‘workflow’ for it was to putting together a blog post (although a blog post is usually a lot quicker in my experience).

This video identifies some of the stages I went through last week that are similar to how I go about writing many blog posts.”

Read the transcription on Problogger. I thought this would be particularly interesting for those who are interested in #medialit.