Publication Date


Type of Culminating Activity


Degree Title

Master of Arts in English, Rhetoric and Composition



Major Advisor

Bruce Ballenger, Ph.D.


Moje points out that “scholars have argued that some media, texts, and literacy practices that get counted as new are actually old, but our attention to them is new” (352), and this is true of multimodality. We are being re-engaged with multimodality because of the rise of technologies that allow writers to blend media in seemingly new ways, but we have known before the digital turn that reading and writing are inherently multimodal processes, we just did not have a phrase to describe the multiple semiotic channels that are used to compose until “multimodality.” Early university compositionists conceptualized writing as multimodal in popular pre-twentieth century textbooks, and we can use this early history to inform our contemporary conceptions and pedagogies on multimodality.