Media Literacy

Media literacy in the curriculum


Rights and responsibilities of all citizens

Democracy and holding those in power to account

Taking informed action

Interrogating evidence, evaluating viewpoints, developing reasoned arguments



Rights and responsibilities of citizens

Democracy and holding those in power to account

Evaluating different ways that citizens can act together and contribute to socieity

Weighing up evidence, making arguments, substantiating conclusions



Rights, responsibilities and the role of the media and a free press

Right of the media to investigate and report on matters of public interest

Press reputations and examples of censorship

Use of social media to take action and increase political participation


What is media literacy?

It's the ability to access, analyse, evaluate, create and act using  all forms of communication.

Look at information over time. You can't just look at an article and generalise about its meaning and impact.

You can't always identify the interest/ intention of the author of the information.  Look at his/ her record.

You need to look at an article from a variety of standpoints. For example from an emotional standpoint.

How you feel will affect how you view stories, pictures, video. Your response will also depend on your circumstances. Take a step back. Having to decide what your emotion is puts some distance between you and the information. That interval can help check an unthinking immediate response.

Information neighbourhoods


Includes one sided claims often without factual evidence. Content is paid for by client to increase sales or attention. Creators are unnamed but may publish corrections. 


Uses colourful public statements to offer a one sided view. Not unlike advertising. Client may pay to promote products or improve image. Publicity and PR staff usually unnamed unless they publicly correct an error. 


Focused on gaining/holding an audience. Producers can manipulate their point of view. Producers may be named and may publicly publish corrections.


Mixes facts with illogical, unproven assertions. Often uses exaggerations. Supports a government or other organisation. Creators unnamed, don't publicly correct errors.


Good journalism includes verification of content. Journalists' ethics forbid working for interest groups. Work is signed, authors held accountable and publicly correct errors. 

Raw information

Unfiltered content that cannot be verified, may be truthful, may not be. Person posting it may do so for a reason, not usually held accountable. 

Identifying news value

Prominence: how often has this happened?

Proximity: how close to our reader?

Immediacy: how recent?

Impact: how does this affect our reader?

Novelty: how new is this?

Conflict: how are the two parties displeased?

Emotion: how does this move our reader?

Checking for reliability

R Reputation

E evidence

V verification

I intention

E emotion

W weigh up

Reputation. Have you heard of the source, the person, reliable previously?

Evidence. Differentiate fact and opinion. Read around the issue. Are holes in the story emerging

Verification. Compare to other stories

Intention Why was the story published?

Emotion. How do you feel about the story? Swayed by your feelings?

Weigh up. Does the story sound plausible?