Scholars at the University of Missouri are developing a new way to measure news literacy among teenagers.
The project will be run by Stephanie Craft, an associate professor in the University of Missouri?School of Journalism. She\’ll lead the study and says understanding news literacy is particularly important because new technology has complicated for consumers of news to find and process information.
\”With all of the new technology and also the Internet, it\’s more difficult for people to identify reliable news sources and differentiate them from unreliable sources,\” Craft said.
\”A much more confusion exists about where news originates from. The information landscape is a confusing place nowadays, so the more we are able to do to evaluate which people understand concerning the news and just how they identify news sources, the better we can know how news affects people\’s decisions.\”
One from the key factors of journalism may be the role of educating the general public about important events and issues, however it requires the audience so that you can critically think about what they consume in the media. Evaluating the level of an individual\’s \”news literacy\” is definitely a challenging task for educators and media researchers.
A focus group made up of Chicago students will be used to facilitate the research. The focus groups will be used to develop a survey that can accurately measure participants\’ news literacy.
Craft believes this measuring tool is going to be an important step towards helping develop citizens who are able to adequately decipher media messages and up with credible information about their communities.
\”News literacy is viewed as an important component of democracy,\” Craft said. \”It is not just that I stick to the news, but which i know enough about how the news was produced so that I can make good decisions through the way i vote or what I buy.\”
This research is funded by a $50,000 grant in the Robert R. McCormick Foundation. This comes as part of nearly $5 million that 22 organizations will get over the next two years to help them strengthen quality journalism, promoting news literacy and protecting press freedoms.