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How media literacy is defined: A review
Unformatted Document Text:  15 different approach when defending their decision to include media analysis in their curriculum; they mentioned that students should be able to interpret media messages, because of the sheer amount of information that they are presented with (McClure, 1997). Third, an awareness of the motives and purposes that provide the incentive for media use is deemed an aspect of media literacy by various authors. In the Swiss canton of Vaud, for instance, media education includes developing students’ insights into their own motivation for using the media (Desimoni, 1992), a notion which is echoed by various others (Brown, 1991 36 , 2001; Vooijs & Van der Voort, 1990). None of the authors who claim that people should know about the motives that lead them to use the media provide a reason for their allegation. Only the Idaho state department of education provided a general reason for the importance of media literacy skills which was to enhance basic comprehension skills as well as one’s ability to think and deal with the media in a critical manner (Brown, 1991). Finally, there are those scholars who, in their description of what media literacy entails, claim that people should be able to assess the effect that the media have on their person. In the development of their own media literacy curriculum, Lloyd-Kolkin et al. (1980) relied on a media education program developed by the USOE, which claimed that people had to be able to understand the psychological implications of commercials (121). The curriculum developed by Lloyd-Kolkin et al. also included the ability to understand the impact of television on one’s daily life (Brown, 1991 37 ). Singer, Zuckerman & Singer (1980) developed a media education program which included teaching children about how television influences feelings, ideas and one’s self concept (Brown, 1991 38 ; Desmond, 1997; Ketzer, Swinkels & Vooijs, 1989). Once again, none of the authors whose description of media literacy falls into this final category, explain why they view media literacy as such. Action strategies This aspect refers to the action designed by individuals as a result of incoming information, which may or may not originate in the media, and its subsequent interpretation. In terms of media literacy, this element suggests that people are aware of what non-mediated situations inspire them to use the media, and how the media inspire them to take certain actions. Consequently, this element also entails the ability to access and select different sources of information. Numerous authors who discuss this element do so in four different ways; 1) the ability to locate, access and select information, 2) the ability to take action against media institutions, 3) an awareness of the effect that media content may have on one’s actions, and 4) the ability to consciously manage one’s use of the media. First, some authors focus on the ability to locate, choose and select information. According to Thoman (1999), for instance, media literacy includes the ability to choose and select, as well as the ability to verify information by checking multiple sources (52). Various other definitions mention this same ability (Brown, 1991 39 ; Considine, 1997; Hobbs, 1997, 1998a; Lloyd-Kolkin et al. 1980; Masterman, 1997; 1998; McClure, 1997; Meyrowitz, 1998; Vooijs & Van der Voort, 1990). Other authors placed more of an emphasis on an awareness of how one finds and chooses specific media messages (Buckingham & Sefton-Green, 1997 40 ; 36 This author referred specifically to the CVS programs developed by the Far West Laboratory for Education, Research and Development and the one developed by the Idaho state department of education. 37 Brown in this case referred to the media education project developed by the Far West Laboratory for Education, Research and Development. 38 Brown here referred to the project developed by the Singers research team. 39 Brown here referred to the principles of media education as advocated by the Idaho state department of education. 40 These authors referred to the ideas about media literacy as put forward by the BFI.

Authors: Rosenbaum, Judith.
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15
different approach when defending their decision to include media analysis in their
curriculum; they mentioned that students should be able to interpret media messages, because
of the sheer amount of information that they are presented with (McClure, 1997).
Third, an awareness of the motives and purposes that provide the incentive for media
use is deemed an aspect of media literacy by various authors. In the Swiss canton of Vaud, for
instance, media education includes developing students’ insights into their own motivation for
using the media (Desimoni, 1992), a notion which is echoed by various others (Brown,
1991
36
, 2001; Vooijs & Van der Voort, 1990).
None of the authors who claim that people should know about the motives that lead
them to use the media provide a reason for their allegation. Only the Idaho state department of
education provided a general reason for the importance of media literacy skills which was to
enhance basic comprehension skills as well as one’s ability to think and deal with the media
in a critical manner (Brown, 1991).
Finally, there are those scholars who, in their description of what media literacy
entails, claim that people should be able to assess the effect that the media have on their
person. In the development of their own media literacy curriculum, Lloyd-Kolkin et al. (1980)
relied on a media education program developed by the USOE, which claimed that people had
to be able to understand the psychological implications of commercials (121). The curriculum
developed by Lloyd-Kolkin et al. also included the ability to understand the impact of
television on one’s daily life (Brown, 1991
37
). Singer, Zuckerman & Singer (1980) developed
a media education program which included teaching children about how television influences
feelings, ideas and one’s self concept (Brown, 1991
38
; Desmond, 1997; Ketzer, Swinkels &
Vooijs, 1989).
Once again, none of the authors whose description of media literacy falls into this final
category, explain why they view media literacy as such.

Action strategies
This aspect refers to the action designed by individuals as a result of incoming information,
which may or may not originate in the media, and its subsequent interpretation. In terms of
media literacy, this element suggests that people are aware of what non-mediated situations
inspire them to use the media, and how the media inspire them to take certain actions.
Consequently, this element also entails the ability to access and select different sources of
information. Numerous authors who discuss this element do so in four different ways; 1) the
ability to locate, access and select information, 2) the ability to take action against media
institutions, 3) an awareness of the effect that media content may have on one’s actions, and
4) the ability to consciously manage one’s use of the media.
First, some authors focus on the ability to locate, choose and select information.
According to Thoman (1999), for instance, media literacy includes the ability to choose and
select, as well as the ability to verify information by checking multiple sources (52). Various
other definitions mention this same ability (Brown, 1991
39
; Considine, 1997; Hobbs, 1997,
1998a; Lloyd-Kolkin et al. 1980; Masterman, 1997; 1998; McClure, 1997; Meyrowitz, 1998;
Vooijs & Van der Voort, 1990). Other authors placed more of an emphasis on an awareness
of how one finds and chooses specific media messages (Buckingham & Sefton-Green, 1997
40
;
36
This author referred specifically to the CVS programs developed by the Far West Laboratory for Education,
Research and Development and the one developed by the Idaho state department of education.
37
Brown in this case referred to the media education project developed by the Far West Laboratory for
Education, Research and Development.
38
Brown here referred to the project developed by the Singers research team.
39
Brown here referred to the principles of media education as advocated by the Idaho state department of
education.
40
These authors referred to the ideas about media literacy as put forward by the BFI.


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