There is No Set of Skills for Transliteracy

One of the questions I am repeatedly asked about transliteracy is – what are the set of skills for transliteracy?  I understand where the asker is coming from – in a world where we base so much on standardized tests, having a list you can check off and mark complete is something we have been trained to expect. We need it for validation.

You don’t need me to tell you that the world is rapidly changing around us. That approaches to teaching and learning are changing and that the “old” way of doing things is no longer working.

There is no defined set of skills for transliteracy. That is not because Sue Thomas, or others researching, reading, writing and talking about transliteracy have not bothered to create one, it is because transliteracy is a moving target. It is fluid. As the world around us changes so must we change with it.  We must continually learn, unlearn and relearn. Transliteracy is more than a set of skills, it is a process and journey.

This is an older slideshow that attempts to illustrated all of the dimensions of transliteracy.

Test Your Transliteracy Skills

A short video from the Transliteracy Research Group, delivering a short coded message to test the viewer’s transliteracy skills.

I will stress that this was designed only as a bit of fun – it is not, by any means, a definitive test! However, in producing it, I was mulling on two points related to transliteracy..

1.Our brains are designed to solve problems and spot patterns, which allows __ to miss ___ every third ___ without confusing ____. Whilst it is not possible to understand and demonstrate complete fluency in every type of literacy there is, the ability to find patterns and infer meaning must surely be a component part of being a transliterate individual?

2.The desire to understand and the ability to search out meaning must also be a factor in transliteracy. How many of you did an internet search to de-code the morse code or semaphore sections of the video? Does an ignorance of morse code or semaphore mean you are not transliterate? Or does the desire to fill in that gap and the ability to find that information prove that you *are* transliterate?

Something to ponder, anyway! ;-)

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