What Is Media Literacy?
is an umbrella term encompassing a variety of approaches that
• develop critical thinking skills around all types of media,
• build an understanding of how media messages shape our
culture and society,
• give people tools to advocate for a changed media system.
• Digital Literacy
• Information Literacy
• News Literacy
• Visual Literacy
• Digital Citizenship
requires technical fluency, but also the ability to:
• make informed decisions about what we do and encounter online
• recognize how networked technology affects our behavior and our perceptions
• create and effectively communicate with digital media tools
SOURCE: Media Smarts
is a survival skill
in the Information Age.
Rather than drowning in the abundance of information that floods their lives, information literate people know how to find, evaluate, and use information effectively to solve a particular problem or make a decision.
SOURCE: American Library Association
helps us discern verified information from
spin, opinion and propaganda,
and produce news accurately, fairly and responsibly.
SOURCE: News Literacy Project
Images are powerful and today they are a primary source of our information. With new technologies, almost anyone can create and share visual media.
allows us to effectively find, interpret, evaluate, use, and create images and visual media such as: photographs, videos, illustrations, drawings, maps, diagrams, and advertisements.
Source: American Library Association
Powerful new technologies connect students to the world in new ways that can be both positive and negative. Digital Citizenship refers to the norms of safe and responsible technology use.
In the 21st century, literacy means media literacy
Used well, the media can entertain and inform our children in positive ways. However, since most children aren’t taught to use media thoughtfully, many media messages contribute to public health issues such as obesity, bullying and aggression, low self-esteem, depression, negative body image, risky sexual behavior, and substance abuse, among other problems.
Media Literacy education – which teaches students to apply critical thinking to media messages and to use media to create their own messages – is a key 21st century skill. Media Literacy is critical to the health and well-being of America’s children, as well as to their future participation in the civic and economic life of our democracy.
What is the MLN definition of
Media Literacy is the ability to:
- Decode media messages.
- Assess the influence of those messages on thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.
- Create media thoughtfully and conscientiously.
What can Media Literacy do for us?
- Expands the concept of literacy, as today’s messages come in many forms and literacy can no longer refer simply to the ability to read and write.
- Offers a solution to public health issues, such as body image issues and substance use, exacerbated by toxic media messages.
- Empowers all people to engage in a global media environment.