MODE and the kineikonic mode

MODE is the ESRC research methods node for multimodal methodologies and digital environments. Led by Carey Jewitt at the Institute of Education, University of London, it developed and disseminated expertise across of range of methodological themes, including embodiment, transcription methodologies, social networking and digital video data.

Andrew Burn led on mixed methods approaches to multimodal analysis, and on the development of multimodal theories of the moving image: the kineikonic mode. The term was first introduced in an article by Andrew Burn and David Parker (the research officer for BFI Education): Burn A & Parker D (2001), ‘Making your Mark: Digital Inscription, Animation, and a New Visual Semiotic’, Education, Communication & Information, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp 155-179. You can see an online version, including clips of the digital animations, here.

The theme will be developed over the course of the MODE project through training events, workshops, seminars, working papers and publications.

The video below introduces the concept of the kineikonic mode. It’s one of four introductory videos produced from the MODE Summer School in 2013.



This working paper by Andrew Burn presents key concepts of the kineikonic mode, such as the meta-modal relations between the orchestrating modes of filming and editing, and the other modes, media and cultural forms incorporated into moving image texts. The paper is part of the MODE project, and is published as an e-print of the National Centre for Research Methods: The Kineikonic Mode.

kineikonic analysis


You can also download it here as a pdf.


The extract from Olivier’s Hamlet which is analysed in the first section of the paper

The machinima film which is analysed in the second section of the paper


A shorter version of the paper has appeared as a chapter in the Routledge Handbook of Multimodal Analysis (Second Edition), edited by Carey Jewitt.


This theme is the topic of Victoria Hurr’s doctoral research: she holds one of three PhD scholarships funded by MODE. Her pilot project is an analysis of text, context and audience encounter with Tacita Dean’s FILM at Tate Modern. You can read a section of the draft analysis in the attached document.

Vic Hurr’s analysis of FILM

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