ASU professor's award-winning book promotes visual literacy

By

Maureen Roen

Arizona State University professor Eva Brumberger has developed a new text to offer theoretically motivated, research-supported, classroom-tested insights to faculty in a range of fields who want to help their undergraduate students develop visual literacy.

“The work of many professional communicators today requires the convergence of writing, visual communication and problem-solving skills like never before,” said Brumberger, professor of technical communication.

Think about the range of skills and decisions involved, for example, in creating an engaging website, crafting a Facebook campaign that’ll rise above the clutter, developing customer-friendly materials or trying to hammer out an infographic that brings the most salient data to life.

“Many faculty members who are now integrating visual communication into their courses have had extensive training and experience in traditional forms of verbal expression – in rhetoric, professional writing, communication and literature – but rarely in graphic design, art or visual communication more broadly,” she said.

The book, titled “Designing Texts: Teaching Visual Communication,” was recently recognized in Tampa, Florida, at the annual meeting of the world's largest professional organization for researching and teaching composition, the Council on College Composition and Communication. Brumberger and co-editor Kathryn Northcut received the 2015 Technical and Scientific Communication Award in the category of Best Original Collection of Essays in Technical or Scientific Communication.

Brumberger is a nationally recognized scholar in visual communication, visual literacy and the teaching of professional communication. She joined ASU in 2012 to head up the College of Integrative Sciences and Arts’ growing program in technical communication at ASU’s Polytechnic campus.