Why core standards of media literacy must take into account (opinion)
Today’s young people are growing up in a world full of smartphones, SMS, YouTube, internet access, and instant entertainment and information. But while they may be media savvy, we claim they are not necessarily media or digital literate.
Several studies have shown that many young people lack the media and information literacy they need to be competent communicators in the 21st century. Many do not go beyond the top result in online searches and do not have the critical skills to judge the validity of online search results and identify the sources of information from both the Internet and other media.
Kids and Credibility: An Empirical Examination of Youth, Digital Media Use, and Information Credibility, a 2010 study funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, interviewed 11-18 year olds and found that 89 percent believed “some” to “many” of what they found on the web were believable. You have failed to challenge the ideological assumptions inherent in dramas, news programs, or product and political advertisements.
Throughout much of American educational history there have been calls for greater attention to the advancement of media literacy – the ability to access, evaluate, produce, and critically analyze media and media messages. More recently, the surge in the use of digital tools to construct and communicate ideas using online databases, blogs, Twitter, wikis, SMS, podcasts, picture archives, and digital videos has brought a whole new set of digital skills, and not all Students absolutely have.
In 1989, Ernest L. Boyer, then President of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and former US Education Officer, stated, “Reading and writing are no longer enough. Students must also read and write with an understanding of visual images. Our children have to learn to recognize a stereotype, to isolate a social stereotype and to distinguish facts from propaganda, analysis from banter and important news from reporting. “
In 1996 the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), of which we are both members, passed a resolution stating that “viewing and visualizing is part of our growing awareness of how people collect and share information. … Teachers should guide students in constructing meanings by creating and displaying non-printed text. “
In 2008, the NCTE Executive Committee recognized the importance of new digital / media skills: “As technology has increased the intensity and complexity of literary environments, the 21st century demands a wide range of skills and competencies from an educated person [and] many writers. “
Studies have shown that many young people lack the media and information skills they need to be competent communicators in the 21st century. ”
Being media and digital literacy means accessing and evaluating online information, sharing knowledge, connecting texts, collaborating with others, building networks, creating and remixing multimodal texts and participating in online simulations or games.
The Partnership for 21st Century Skills explicitly lists “media literacy” as one of the vital and necessary skills that today’s students must need to compete in a 21st century workforce. Media literacy is embedded in the P21 curriculum skill cards for English-speaking arts, social studies, arts, and other disciplines.
For the past three years, the K-12 Horizon Report published by the New Media Consortium has stated that the greatest challenge facing schools in the 21st is technological competence. “
Despite these consistent calls for more attention to media / digital literacy, many of the policy initiatives related to the federal “No Child Left Behind” law and the increased use of standardized reading and writing tests continue to focus on teaching print skills. Media teaching expenses – / digital skills.
The heavy focus on teaching printed reading comprehension skills in preparation for standardized reading tests has ignored recent research showing that understanding online texts requires the ability to find symbols or links that relate to one’s reading purpose, what Completely different comprehension skills required of those who are used to process printed texts. However, these skills are not taught as the emphasis is on preparing students for writing based on printing skills. And since many government writing tests still require handwritten answers, many teachers advise against using computers to write in order to prepare students for these tests.
Meanwhile, the Common Core State Standards currently adopted by 45 states and the District of Columbia frame the use of media / digital literacy primarily for understanding and communicating information. For example, one of the reading standards for Grades 6-12 states that students should be able to: “Information presented in various ways (such as words, pictures, graphics, and videos) in printed and digital sources to synthesize and apply to answer questions, solve problems or compare forms of presentation ”; and one of Grades 6-12 writing standards: “Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and interact with writing.” = “http:>
This focus marginalizes the use of a range of other media / digital skills associated with social networking sites, blogs, wikis, digital pictures / videos, smartphone / tablet apps, video games, podcasts, etc. to create and create media content Build social networks, involve the audience and criticize status quo problems.
Apart from mentioning the need to “evaluate information from multiple oral, visual or multimodal sources”, there is no specific reference in the common standards to the critical analysis and production of film, television, advertising, radio, news, music, popular culture, Video games, media remixes and so on. Neither is there express attention given to promoting a critical analysis of media messages and presentations.
A nationwide survey of state standards from 1999 revealed elements of media literacy in the teaching standards of almost all states. Indeed, if states adopt the common core standards, the result may be less focus on media and literacy education that are formally included in state standards.
We therefore recommend four ways to counter the limited focus of the common standards on media / digital skills:
1) Add additional media / digital literacy standards. The Common Core State Standards Initiative allows states to add their own standards for use in their schools (up to 15 percent additional standards on top of the common core standards). We encourage states to focus on media / digital competencies that encompass both critical analysis of media / digital texts and production of media / digital texts. For example, the added media / digital standards in Minnesota expect 11th and 12th grade students to understand, analyze, evaluate, and use various types of print, digital, and multimodal media. to evaluate the acoustic, visual and written images and other special effects used in mass media on their ability to inform, convince and entertain; and examine the overlaps and conflicts between visual (e.g. media images, painting, film, graphics) and verbal messages. The Minnesota Standards emphasize both analysis and production, and recognize that through production, students learn about media / digital writing. And through the analysis of media / digital texts, the students develop criteria for assessing the quality of their productions.
2) Build on the common core standards to develop curricula and instructions that focus on integrating print and media / digital skills. The common standards formulate teaching objectives; Educators can then use these goals to develop curricula and instructions that focus on integrating print and media / digital skills. For example, to encourage critical responses to literature, students can use blogs and wikis to facilitate the exchange of responses and to create links to other texts, authors, topics or problems caused by a text, as well as digital video adaptations of literary texts. When teaching argumentative writing, teachers can ask students to use an online role-playing game to spell out the pros and cons on a topic.
3) Push for assessments that include media / digital literacy measures using media / digital tools. Two consortia, the SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium with 30 states and the Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC for short, with 25 states, are developing computer-aided assessments that will be implemented in 2014. Because these assessments determine the curriculum and teaching in connection with the implementation of the common standards. Exams could require students to criticize examples of media representations of race, class, or gender, or to engage in access to and assessment of the quality of information online.
4) Support and funding of professional development for teachers to help them integrate media / digital literacy into the classroom. For busy class teachers there is a need to offer extra-occupational classes. Several national groups such as the International Society for Technology in Education are already ready to offer this training, but it needs to be offered and implemented regionally and locally.
The time to ponder what is missing in modern schools is over. We cannot afford to ignore student engagement with digital communication tools and popular culture in all subjects. Teachers must require that the implementation of the Common Core Standards include an emphasis on teaching media / digital skills in a way that makes school lessons relevant and meaningful and better prepares students for life in the 21st century .
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