News Literacy

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News Literacy Resources

On this site

Lesson plans and content on this site about critical thinking about media
Six Principles Behind News Literacy
Five Questions to "Really" Get to the Truth


U.S. Department of Education
Its definition of literacy.

A Federal Trade Commission campaign to educate kids ages 8 to 12 about advertising so they can become more discerning consumers of information. The site focuses on helping them recognize and analyze commercial messages and  evaluate non-commercial messages, including editorial content and literature.

BBCSchool Report
Using lesson plans and materials from this website, teachers help students develop their journalistic skils by giving U.K. 11-14 year-olds the chance to make their own news reports for a real audience.

Center for Civic Media
Civic media is defined here as any form of communiation that strengthens the social bonds within a community or creates a strong sense of civic engagement among its residents. Civic media goes beyond news gathering and reporting. A collaboration of the MIT Media Lab and Comparative Media Studies.

Center for Media Literacy
A Malibu, Calif.-based educational organization that provides leadership, public education, professional development and educational resources nationally.

Center for News Literacy
Based at Stony Brook University, the center is dedicated to training the next generation of news consumers to think critically about what they read, see and hear. See a sample syllabus here:  Also check out their News Literacy Conference page.

Center for Social Media at American University
Based at American University, the center investigater, showcases and sets standards for socially engaged media-making. This includes organizing conferences, publishing research, creating codes of best practices, and incubating media strategies.

Common Sense Media
A K-12 curriculum that aims to teach students to be responsible, respectful, and safe digital citizens.

Digital Curriculum & Tools for the 21st Century
Scholastic has a free trial offer for social studies teachers in grades 4-12 outlining a digital curriculum for 21st century information literacy skills.

"Digital and Media Literacy: A Plan of Action"
The Knight Commission recognized that people need tools, skills and understanding to use information effectively, and that successful participation in the digital age entails two kinds of skills sets: digital literacy and media literacy. A white paper by Renee Hobbs of Temple University.

Games as instruction in media literacy

  • Play the News is a web-based platform that brings interactive gaming elements to the online 'news media' industry changing the paradigm of news consumption from passive reading to active engagement.
  • Ian Bogost is a leader in the games-as-instruction movement. His blog mentions other games. Some about media, some not.

"Gaming Education Reform: Put Down Your Pencils and Play" from The Huffington Post
The popularity and increasing innovation of video game play is providing a new and surprisingly fresh framework for policy discussions about education reform.

Kids and Credibility. An Empirical Examination of Youth, Digital Media Use, and Information Credibility
A study from the Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation into youth’s Internet use and their assessment of the credibility of online information. Findings from this project constitute the first systematic survey of youth designed to assess their information-seeking strategies and beliefs across a wide variety of media and information types.

"Leap of Faith: Inside the movement to build an audience of citizens" from the Columbia Journalism Review
A look at the news literacy movement.

Link TV's Know the News:
Compare news coverage from around the world, test your knowledge of how news is shaped, and shape some yourself.

Lovejoy Journalism and News Literacy blog
Educating news consumers about the strengths and weaknesses of the various media on which they rely, and raising the consciousness of news producers about the expectations of their audiences. Put together by the Colby College Lovejoy Journalism and News Literacy initiative.

McCormick Meda Matters News Literacy Resources
Information on news literacy, curriculum and teaching ideas.

Media Education Lab
Based at Temple University in Philadelphia, the Media Education Lab advances media literacy education through research and community service, emphasizing interdisciplinary scholarship and practice that stands at the intersections of communication, media studies and education.

Media Literacy 101: Power to the People
In world of infinite information, there's a difference between being tech savvy and life savvy? A discussion of why students need to become news literate.

Media Literacy Clearinghouse
MLC's mission is to assist K-12 educators who want to teach standards that include non-print, media texts, learn more about media literacy, integrate it into classroom instruction, help students read the media, help students become more media aware and locate appropriate resources.

The Media Spot
By integrating media literacy education through digital media production in schools, classrooms, afterschool programs, and other educational settings, the Media Spot builds and support curricula with educators, and collaborates with students to connect emerging technologies with traditional learning goals and standards.

National Association for Media Literacy Education
A national membership organization dedicated to advancing the field of media literacy education in the United States.

"News-Focused Game Playing: Is It a Good Way to Engage People in an Issue?" from Nieman Reports
Journalists are experimenting with different presentations of online news even though there isn’t a lot of research to tell them whether such storytelling techniques work with news, or if they do, how and why.

The News Literacy Project
A national program to mobilize journalists to help middle school and high school students sort fact from fiction in the digital age. A look at a month in the project:

News Trust's Think Like a Journalist guides
The guides help users distinguish news from opinion, become familiar with journalism principles and ethics, and sharpen critical judgment. Also be sure to check their resource page:

Newspaper Association of America Foundation
High Five, an integrated journalism and language arts curriculum for middle school students.
Understanding Media: How Messages Work

Partnership for 21st Century Skills
A group that seeks to fuse the three Rs and four Cs (critical thinking and problem solving, communication, collaboration, and creativity and innovation).

POV, a social issues documentary film series on PBS, offers free resources for use in the classroom, including standards-aligned lesson plans & online film clips, a DVD lending library, discussion guides & reading lists. Visit

Project Look Sharp from Ithaca College
A media literacy initiative of to provide materials, training and support for the effective integration of media literacy with critical thinking into classroom curricula at all education levels.

Project New Media Literacies
Researchers focus on whether kids have the basic social skills and cultural competencies so that when they get computers in their classroom they can participate fully.

"Revolution Needed for Teaching Literacy in a Digital Age" from The Huffington Post
Unless the American education system changes course integrate literacy and digital culture into our current educational paradigm, academic achievement gains will continue to stagnate.

State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda
Created by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, this exhibition includes student activities, an online poll and forum.

"Teach Media Literacy" from The Atlantic
 Making media literacy a feature of public education
The site's focus is on the reading and writing skills teenagers need and can be taught using journalistic methods and new digital tools. The project is led by Esther Wojcicki, a veteran journalism/English teacher at Palo Alto (Calif.) High School. She chairs the board of Creative Commons and is the mother-in-law of Google co-founder Sergey Brin.

United Nations' Alliance of Civilizations Media Literacy Education Clearinghouse
A global repository of information, resources, and good practices relevant to media literacy education, media education policy and youth media.

"Why Core Standards Must Embrace Media Literacy" from Education Week
While today's young people may be awash in information from smartphones, the web and texting, they are not necessarily media- or digital-literate.

Why Every Student Should Learn the Skills of a Journalist
A conversation with Esther Wojcicki of Palo Alto (Calif.) High School about serving students and educators by helping them learn these tools instead of blocking or censoring them.

Chicago teens have access to books, more than 100 laptop and desktop computers, and a variety of media creation tools and software, all of which allow them to stretch their imaginations and their digital media skills.