Chapter 8: The Polyphonic Classroom: A Collaborative Pedagogical Approach to Information Literacy and Digital Composition

Reviewed by Leah Peel

In their contribution to the book, Jill Parrott, Erin Presley, and Caroline Cason Barratt reflected on their use of collaboration in an interdisciplinary course designed to ensure students are technologically prepared for the academic work they will be asked to do at the university. The authors, two faculty members and a teaching librarian, argued that rather than simply cooperating, their classroom demonstrated true collaboration, where all three equally work toward the same goal at the same time (p. 224).

Parrott, Presley, and Cason Barratt suggested that their method of collaboration could benefit other learning environments as well, particularly the collaboration of classroom teachers with library instructors. The authors used their "polyphonic classroom" as a model throughout the chapter for creating truly collaborative and interdisciplinary classrooms. They argue that classes such as theirs lend themselves especially well to building relationships between information literacy, new media literacy, and traditional, academic literacies. In doing so, students are asked to engage with information in new ways to create a richer learning experience.

The chapter included many examples and links, but because of the malleable nature of the Web, some no longer directed readers to the intended resource. Even so, those that worked provide useful examples that readers could adapt to their own classroom, including tutorials and assignments. On a whole, the chapter brought light to collaborative teaching across disciplines in meaningful ways for instructors and students. The insights provided by the authors opened the door to future conversations and applications of collaborative teaching and pedagogy.

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