Media Literacy Research Presentation

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  • 1. Measuring Media LiteracyAmong Collegiate Journalism Students
    An exercise in patience & perseverance
    By Jory Burson
    Image from
  • 2. The Inspiration:
    Five semesters of grading papers for JB 1143 Media & Society
  • 3. The Definition:
    the ability of a citizen to access, analyze, and produce information for specific outcomes.
    - The Aspen Institute National Leadership Conference on Media Literacy
    A media literate person and everyone should have the opportunity to become one can decode, evaluate, analyze, and produce both print and electronic media.
    - Aufderheide (2001, pg. 79)
  • 4. The Questions:
    What is the media literacy knowledge level of collegiate journalism students?
    How does the media literacy knowledge level of journalism students compare to that of non-journalism students?
  • 5. The Hypothesis:
    Journalism majors will score higher than non-journalism majors on a media literacy survey.
  • 6. The Justification:
    Journalism students should have a thorough understanding of the media industry upon graduation.
    Effective media literacy education for journalists can impact our democracy.
    This study could help guide future efforts to provide media literacy education for journalism students.
  • 7. The Theory:
    • Potters Cognitive Theory of Media Literacy (2004)
    • 8. Defines the process of becoming media literate in three parts:
    • 9. Knowledge structures must be developed.
    • 10. Continually develop knowledge structures and applying critical thinking toward media messages.
    • 11. Media literacy must have a purpose.
    • 12. Social Construction Theory
    (Berger & Luckmann, 1966)
  • 13. The Methodology:
    From the literature review, seven primary criterion of a media literate individual were identified:
    1) Awareness of medias impact on the individual and society
    2) Understanding the media system & how it works
    3) Information processing and critical thinking
  • 14. The Methodology, continued:
    4) Awareness of medias social constructionist role
    5) Increased enjoyment or appreciation of media content
    6) Knowledge of medias role within the First Amendment
    7) Continual development asmental maturity increases
  • 15. The Methodology, continued:
    To test those criterion, a media literacy survey was developed based on research by Potter (1998) and Thayer (2007).
    The researcher surveyed for all the criterions except #7, continual development.
  • 16. The Methodology, continued:
    The researcher used e-mail and direct classroom recruitment for the sampling method.
    - e-mails sent via departmental listservs + visits to selected, consenting classrooms used to host the survey for e-mail responses.
    Codebook developed by the researcher to input paper-survey responses into SPSS.
  • 17. The Survey:
    • 53 total test items
    • 18. Combination of multiple choice, yes-no, scale, and open-ended questions.
    • 19. Questions about prior knowledge of media literacy:
    • 20. How many courses have you had which have discussed media literacy?
    • 21. Define media literacy to the best of your ability.