A. Gifreu-Castells1, R. Lagonigro2

1University of Vic-Central University of Catalonia (SPAIN)
2Open Documentary Lab (UNITED STATES)
The University of Vic-Central University of Catalonia (UVic-UCC) is a young university, officially recognised by the Parliament of Catalonia in May 1997. Since the University of Vic first offered Communication Studies in 2005, it has focused on new media practices and interactive projects. The Communication Degree at the University of Vic provides a unique offer of around twenty subjects related to multimedia. The branches of audiovisual production (for television and new formats) and multimedia are the points that differentiate this degree offered by the University of Vic from other communication degrees.

Before the implementation of the Bologna Process, the 4th year students of the Audiovisual Communication Degree had to develop a Final Degree Project in order to obtain the title at the Uvic-UCC. Students had a whole year – and four related subjects – to create interactive platforms (such as interactive documentaries, short films, interactive virtual tours, mobile applications, etc.) in which the different parts merged into a single audiovisual and multimedia online project.

The starting point of the Final Degree Project was the study of learning theories and methodologies. In the initial weeks the students worked using the "expert groups" practice to understand and assimilate that constructivist theories are flexible enough to adapt to multidisciplinary knowledge. Emphasis was placed on the use of information technologies and communication as an essential component of learning.

The main goal of some projects was to foresee future student needs and thus be able to design multimedia platforms, applications and databases for the next generation of students, the so-called digital natives. Then, taking advantage of different subjects related to the Final Degree Project, the idea was hatched to enrich and produce for specific subjects or research areas for the entire University.

In this article we will analyse three specific projects born in different contexts and colleges: Projecte Lumieres (2010), MetamentalDOC (2011) and I tu qui ets? (2013). Projecte Lumieres is the first Catalan database related to cinema history, and its origin is the subject "Cinema History", taught at the Business and Communication College. In the same College, but related to the "Documentary Wokshop", the idea behind MetamentalDOC arose, a transmedia project that looks at documentary film in general and independent documentary film. I tu qui ets? was born in the Education, Humanities and Translation College from a subject called "Gender equality".

Today these platforms are used for both teachers and students from these subjects and colleges in order to experiment with new learning methodologies and teaching models in Spain. The students are invited to first watch short films, documentaries and other audiovisual resources, then they can navigate and play with the interactive platform to discover documents and do exercises, learning the lesson in a fun and different way. Finally, they can share the content and knowledge with other classmates. Assessment is continual. Students complete online tests and games to achieve the skills required to pass the subject. These tests and games are assessed. The overall marks and the survey results as well as the level of satisfaction of the students using these new tools, platforms and methodologies are higher than the previous generation of students.