Research

Statewide Survey of Media Literacy Education to Serve as National Model

KINGSTON, R.I. – June 15, 2021 – Screen time during the pandemic increased for almost everyone. What effects might that increase have caused to ourselves and our children? Are there ways to mitigate the negative effects of media use and increase the positive ones? Media literacy advocates believe that education is one important part of the solution. Media Literacy Now-RI, in collaboration with the University of Rhode Island’s Media Education Lab, is conducting a statewide study of the level of media literacy integration in Rhode Island schools during June, July, and August. The study, led by professional and student researchers at the Media Education Lab, will include an online survey of school educators, administrators, and parents, and follow-up interviews with volunteer respondents for more in-depth information. The project is being supported with funding from Social Science Institute for Research, Education, and Policy at the University of Rhode Island.

“The fake news crisis, coronavirus and vaccination misinformation, cyberbullying, and the misuse of social media to incite extremist views are the latest issues to highlight the need for the concept of literacy in this century to include the critical analysis of all forms of media,” said Pam Steager, state coordinator for Media Literacy Now-RI, part of the national Media Literacy Now movement which works with state legislatures to get legislation passed towards integrating media literacy into state education programs. “But media literacy education also covers a wide range of skills and practices that can improve our understanding of and engagement with media and technology, increase our understanding of ourselves and others, and strengthen our democracy.

This research is a follow-up to the survey completed by school superintendents in 2018 to determine how well media literacy skills are being taught in Rhode Island schools.” Are you an educator, school librarian, parent or guardian of a K-12 student? Curious about media literacy education activities? Want to learn more and help Rhode Island determine the next steps to become a leader in media literacy education? Participants in the project will be entered in a sweepstakes for an iPad Mini. The winner will be chosen in August.

To learn more or take the survey, visit Media Literacy Now-RI at https://www.medialiteracyri.com/ To contact Pam Steager of Media Literacy Now RI, call (401) 439-1292, or email psteager@gmail.com.

Researching the State of Media Literacy in Rhode Island