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Media Literacy

Media Literacy: Don't Believe Everything You Read

Graphic from the American Library Association that reads, "Because fake news can have real-world consequences."

Image via the American Library Association's "Libraries Transform" initiative, librariestransform.org

Just plain wrong, or actively lying?

"Dewey Defeats Truman." Photograph. November 4, 1948. United Press International.

"Dewey Defeats Truman." Photograph. November 4, 1948. United Press International.


When reading the news, you have to know the wider context. It is your job to check multiple unrelated sources and keep yourself informed.

News happens quickly (that's why they call it news — it's new information). Journalists can make projections in good faith, which then turn out to be incorrect. This is a common occurrence, but it is very different from actively misleading the public.

 

Standards of Journalism

Same as it ever was

Five Key Questions of Media Literacy

The Media Education Lab at the University of Rhode Island works to improve media literacy though scholarship, curriculum design, teacher education, and community outreach. These "Five Key Questions for Media Literacy" were developed by the Media Education Lab to provide a helpful framework for evaluating news and media sources. Whether you're reading an article shared on social media, watching a television news segment, or even looking at an advertisement, keep these five questions in mind and think critically about the sources you encounter.

Graphic: List of 5 key questions for media literacy. 1. Who created the message and what is the purpose? 2. What techniques are used to attract and hold your attention? 3. What lifestyles, values and points of view are depicted? 4. How might different people interpret this message? 5. What is omitted?

Fact-Checking & Evaluating News

Political Stances of Major News Sources

Media Bias Chart version 6.0, links to interactive chart on Ad Fontes Media website.

Chart rating the partisanship of news publications rated on two axes. Left-to-right rates sources on their Liberal to Conservative partisan bias. From Bottom to Top, the segments are: Contains Inaccurate/Fabricated Information; Propaganda/Contains Misleading Information; Selective or Incomplete Story/Unfair Persuasion; Opinion/Fair Persuasion; Analysis; Complex Analysis; Fact Reporting; Original Fact Reporting.