Social Semiotics: From Advertising to the Classroom

Within the reading I found a specific interest in the concept of social semiotics. Now, I am by no means a wiz at technology or fonts or coding or really anything besides searching on Google and writing papers, so it has become particularly interesting to me that there are individuals out there who analyze the way things are read and why. The paragraph in the reading in which states, “The approach from Social Semiotics not only draws attention to the many kinds of meanings which are at issue in design, but the “social” in “Social Semiotics” draws attention to the fact that meanings always relate to specific societies and their cultures, and to the meanings of the members of those cultures. Semiotics takes the sign – a fusion of a form and a meaning – as its basic unit. In making signs we –embedded in our cultures – select forms in such a way that they expresses the meanings that we ‘have’ always ‘aptly’; hence signs always express, through their form, the meanings that the makers of signs have wished to make” is an interesting concept to think about, especially when considering the theme of individualized learning. For texts and images (signs) to be aptly based off of the expression of a culture and how to intrigue interest can and should be used similarly in classroom settings. Imagine if we took this same concept for each student and individualized texts and images in readings and on projects or lectures and made it adaptable and relatable to each individual in order to increase learning growth, how much individuals would strive. While, yes, we may have to leave some aspects of school traditional, we can open up an entire branch of learning that involves students adapting to information and skills in their own ways based on their culture, their abilities to interpret text, and be attracted or interested in these texts and images. This idea of Social Semiotics may be a branch to open an entire field of education that is practically unsolved. In addition we can take the idea of design from social semiotics and transform it to fit individual topics in education systems. For example, in Literature Classes we can use design to create our own ideas about what society has become today into images and using those images, create our own literature that parallels to how authors would code societal issues into their writing.


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