New book – Relational and multimodal higher education: Digital, social and environmental perspectives

The new book by Dr. Natasa Lackovic (Lancaster University) and c:o/re team member Dr. Alin Olteanu has just been published in the book series Routledge Studies in Multimodality, managed by Professor Kay O’Halloran.

The book Relational and Multimodal Higher Education: Digital, Social and Environmental Perspectives proposes a relational turn by conceptualizing knowledge and pedagogy as relational and multimodal, analyzed through three dimensions of relationality: social, technological, and environmental.

The volume draws on interdisciplinary approaches that make a case for integrating these interconnected and distinct dimensions in higher education theory and practice. Its novelty lies in combining such a variety of perspectives with Peircean semiotics to explore what it means to learn and live relationally. It emphasizes the importance of critical reflection, rooted in an environmental understanding of knowledge and digital media. This approach integrates materiality, place, and space in higher education, positioning caring, critically reflective and imaginative interactions and interpretations as central for knowledge growth. The volume features practical case studies of relational pedagogy through dialogues with diverse higher education practitioners, which embrace expression and creation through more than one dominant modality of communication and being. The book envisions students and educators as relational agents, with relational awareness and responsibility, aware of their multimodal identities. It highlights how a relational multimodal paradigm can serve as a way forward for universities to address global challenges concerning social, (post)digital, and environmental futures.

This innovative book should be of interest to scholars, students, teachers, and policymakers in higher education, semiotics and multimodality, as well as postdigital, sociomaterial and futures studies.