This project is an ongoing effort in the area of scholarship of teaching and learning. It focuses on “translating” two specific subject areas to make them accessible for high school audiences and the general public:
First, this work focuses on climate change science, and the efforts of scholars to create and measure the impact of powerful climate change imagery on people that might be called “climate skeptics”. Existing work has highlighted the power of photography, video, social media and immersive journalism in providing both evidence of climate change as well as emotional charged imagery that can change people’s hesitance or resistance to learning about, engaging with and acknowledging human-made climate change.
Our work takes the insights from this scholarship, including the psychophysiological research on climate change communication, and develops an 8-week course during which students learn what constitutes “convincing climate change visualization” (Chung and Lee 2019).
Second, our students then become active researchers that gather and document the impacts of climate change on their communities. Following the inspiration of previous research work that highlights the need of the direct inclusion of local indigenous populations in research operations as a form of reconciliation, indigenous and non-indigenous students from two hemispheres will collaborate and contribute to research on climate change visualization.
Furthermore, these contributions will be shared as part of the cultural program for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate, and thus give students an opportunity to speak to UN delegates at this event and share their evidence through carefully crafted imagery and video.
Furthermore, this project is focused on the scholarship of teaching and learning, examining the limitations and learning opportunities posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The current situation due to COVID-19 constitutes an opportunity to move a course that under normal circumstances would be taught using active participatory methodologies to a virtual collaborative modality, through discussion sessions, conversation and brainstorming on the effects of climate change in each of the regions of origin of the participants. Participants are tasked with collecting photographs or videos on the effects of climate change.
At each meeting, students share their images with each other, critique them and receive constructive feedback from the instructors, with everyone using a rubric that evaluates both the climate change visualization aspects of the images as well as their photographic/videographic quality.
As an end product, students will create a virtual gallery space that exhibits their best work, and share this work with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.