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Media Literacy

A Vermont-based nonprofit is developing a media literacy course


WILLISTON, Vt. (WCAX) – With information being swirled around on social media, it can be difficult to tell what is real, what is fake, and what is misleading.

Technology for Tomorrow is committed to bringing technology education and more online opportunities to underserved communities. Their latest addition is an entire course devoted to media literacy.

“How can we convey what we teach at ASU to our students and the general public,” said Kristy Roschke, executive director of News Co / Lab at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism.

She says media literacy is critical to navigating information in the 21st century.

“I see media literacy as fundamental literacy like reading and writing,” said Roschke.

She and her colleagues created an online course to help the general public manage their news consumption. The goal was easy to set.

“From the feeling of being overwhelmed and the feeling that there is nothing you can do to a feeling of ‘Oh, OK, I understood that,’” said Roschke.

But difficult to reach, so they started working with organizations to reach their audiences.

“The ability to work with other groups enables them to use the content we have created in a variety of formats,” said Roschke.

“We work with them and then we, Technology for Tomorrow, convert this course into a typical traditional instructor-led course,” said Bjorn Norstrom, program manager at Technology for Tomorrow in Williston.

Your nonprofit aims to provide skill-based technology assistance to underserved communities such as the elderly.

“We’re trying to introduce principles of media literacy,” said Norstrom.

These are things like spotting misinformation, checking sources, and looking behind the scenes of media work. Norstrom says with the right course guidance, the value is undeniable.

“There is a lot of what I can do if I get these links on social media before I hit the share button and start distributing it?” What can I do to make sure the information is credible and reliable instead of just clicking on something and spreading something that may not be true, ”said Norstrom.

Norstrom says the tools to navigate an ever-changing media landscape will help you not just yourself, as information is constantly brought to you, whether you are looking for it or not.

“What can I do to make sure the information is believable and reliable instead of just clicking and spreading something that may not really be true,” said Norstrom.

Right now they are testing the program to fix kinks as they prepare to offer it to their target audience.

They are also considering bringing to the state of Arizona to do research while the course is being taught.

Click here for a link to the short version of the program.

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