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“Something is Immensely Rotten in the Media Republic”. The Information Dimension of the Refugee Crisis in Europe

Abstract

The article analyzes the reaction of German media to the assaults on women in Cologne and other German and European cities on New Year’s Eve 2015/2016. Nationwide TV channels and newspapers, with rare exceptions, did not report about the events till January 4 or even 5, causing outrage in social networks. This is serious evidence of deep problems in German and Western journalism. Due to the abundance of information resources, the mainstream media hold no monopoly on news delivery anymore. If they continue to compromise themselves, there is a danger of reorientation of the Western audience towards alternative sources of information: extremist Internet resources and foreign media, first of all the Russian ones.

Open access
The Synthesis of Binary Oppositions «Two in One», «Three in One» and «Five Against Four» in D.Merezhkovsky’s Religious Publicism

Abstract

The article presents a differentiation of connotations for the following numbers: one, two, three, four and five from the Dmytro Merezhkovsky’s journalistic program. The implicative nature of the numbers is already established. On its basis there is the synthesis of binary oppositions with religious and philosophical directions and additional extrapolation of the number system into Russian political and cultural areas in the first half of 20th century. The purpose of this article is to differentiate multiple connotations of author’s images and to demonstrate examples of their use. The subject of this study is also to show the ways of reality reflection in the symbolist journalism. The article presents numerical symbols in D. Merezhkovsky’s publicism.

Open access
Ukraine in the German Media in the Context of Political Transformations in the Interwar Period (Based on the Materials of Daily “Dilo”)

Abstract

This article presents the analysis of thematic, historical and political spectrums of the “Ukrainian” content in the German newspapers and magazines of the interwar period. As a source base for this scientific work the authors analyze the newspaper and magazine journalism of that time, which allows not only to keep certain historical episodes (konstatives), but also (in some way) to reflect the views, needs, intentions, challenges, promises as well as German political and social factors in terms of disillusionment of Ukrainian patriotic forces (performatives). Nazism and Bolshevism skillfully used propaganda to achieve predatory targets, therefore it should be a lesson for the future generations, also the importance of conceptional media in Ukraine and Poland should increase.

Open access
Blended synchronous learning environment: Student perspectives

Abstract

Distance education environments can take many forms, from asynchronous to blended synchronous environments. Blended synchronous learning environment (BSLE) can be defined as an innovative setting in which students can decide to attend classes either face-to-face or via a synchronous virtual connection. Many educators are unfamiliar teaching in BSLE because of lack of experience or exposure to this delivery method. Thus, it is important to understand the optimal organisational structures and the effective management of BSLE courses to facilitate student learning and interaction. Seeking to understand this teaching method, an exploratory mixed-method study was conducted to examine graduate students’ perceptions of the BSLE. Quantitative and qualitative data was collected from a questionnaire and analysed. The findings revealed that students were satisfied with the BSLE, interactions, and the instructor. However, findings showed that the instructor divided attention between face-to-face and online synchronous students, which can cause cognitive overload and compromise the quality of instruction. Additionally, this study suggests that technical difficulties can affect students’ satisfaction with BSLE courses. Implications for further research and limitations are discussed.

Open access
A digital Jewish history?

Abstract

How can we teach Jewish history in a modern and effective way? In Hamburg, Germany, a school project called Geschichtomat tries to find an answer to that question. With the help of digital media, students explore their Jewish neighbourhood. This one-of-a-kind German program permits students to experience the Jewish past and present life in their hometown. During the project, students explore their neighbourhood to understand its historical figures, places, and events. This way they engage with Jewish life. Under the supervision of experts in the disciplines of history and media education, the students will: research, perform interviews with cultural authorities and contemporary witnesses, visit museums and archives, shoot and cut films, edit photos and write accompanying texts. Finally, their contributions are uploaded to the geschichtomat.de website. Little by little a digital map of Jewish life from the perspective of teenagers will take shape.

Open access
Educational robots and children’s imagery: a preliminary investigation in the first year of primary school

Abstract

This study, within the dual context of media education and the use of educational robots, presents a preliminary investigation relating children’s imagery of robots achieved through the analysis of 44 drawings done by children in the first year of primary school. In addition to identifying a set of analytical criteria to be further investigated, the research shows (i) some sources of children’s imagery about robots, (ii) the difficulties of a specific age group to clearly distinguish between toys, robots and human beings and (iii) some possible indications for educational paths.

Open access
Exploring factors related to college student expertise in digital games and their relationships to academics

Abstract

Digital game play is a common pastime among college students and monopolizes a great deal of time for many students. Researchers have previously investigated relationships between subject-specific game play and academics, but this study fulfills a need for research focusing on entertainment game strategies and how they relate to strategies and success in other contexts. Utilizing a survey of 191 undergraduate students, the goal was to investigate students’ digital game play habits, strategies, and beliefs that predict gaming expertise, and to determine if these relate to academic success. Factor analysis revealed three latent variables that predict expertise: dedication, solo mastery, and strategic play. Multiple regression analysis was used to determine whether these three components could also predict academic outcome variables. Findings point to the absence of a relationship between these variables and academic GPA, but to the presence of a tentative relationship between confidence in game play and confidence in personal control over academic success.

Open access
Social Robotics
Open access
Social robotics to help children with autism in their interactions through imitation

Abstract

This article aims to reflect on the main variables that make social robotics efficient in an educational and rehabilitative intervention. Social robotics is based on imitation, and the study is designed for children affected by profound autism, aiming for the development of their social interactions. Existing research, at the national and international levels, shows how children with autism can interact more easily with a robotic companion rather than a human peer, considering its less complex and more predictable actions. This contribution also highlights how using robotic platforms helps in teaching children with autism basic social abilities, imitation, communication and interaction; this encourages them to transfer the learned abilities to human interactions with both adults and peers, through human–robot imitative modelling. The results of a pilot study conducted in a kindergarten school in the Liguria region are presented. The study included applying a robotic system, at first in a dyadic child–robot relation, then in a triadic one that also included another child, with the aim of eliciting social and imitative abilities in a child with profound autism.

Open access
Theoretical vocabularies and styles of explanation of robot behaviours in children

Abstract

How do children describe and explain the behaviour of robotic systems? In this paper, some distinctions between different types of explanations, drawing from the philosophy of science literature, are proposed and exemplified by reference to an activity in which primary school children are asked to describe and explain the behaviour of a pre-programmed Braitenberg-like vehicle. The proposed distinctions are also discussed against other studies drawn from the related scientific literature. A qualitative study has provided insights to further refine the analysis described here, through the introduction of other sub-categories of explanation of robotic behaviours.

Open access