Monday, October 31, 2011

My New Understanding

How have my views changed?

I think that my concept of literacy has changed the most while reading about media literacy. It has certainly expanded. Previously I had seen literacy as simple a concept for reading and understanding novels, or more broadly, written texts of literature. I do admit to having a bias for these types because I have a nostalgia for things closer to the past, even though we still use majority print media to this day. However, with the expansion of media literacy, I see how my opinions can come to envelope more areas of the literacy field. For example, I love films and movies. If I take into consideration visual literacy and compare it to my love of cinematography, I can see the increased value for using visual literacy within a classroom setting. Also, movies just create a reality to the "film" going on within a person's head as they use their imagination while reading print or text.
Truly the possibilities are almost limitless when it comes to the broad concept of literacy. As long as new technologies are being invented, new media will pop up, and therefore new views on literacy will have to be created. I see all of this as a giant football field, and each light that shines on one part of the field as being a certain type of literacy. When all the lights are lit, we will see a more unified field and the entire picture of the truth of a subject we are focusing on.

Media literacy as a form of information literacy

Question: How does the content from the RSS connect or disconnect with what you know about your field already?

Media literacy at first seemed like it matched up with information literacy, a topic we had discussed earlier in our curriculum. Information literacy is defined as the ability to know when there is a need for information, ability to know the types of sources, and the ability to evaluate and use those sources. In this case, media literacy is just a specific type of information literacy; knowing how to apply it to all the different types of media fields, whether they be paper documents, videos, or information on the Internet. Being literate of a media simply means that the person is able to use and navigate the type of forum successfully. With each new generation coming into the world, people are now living in a world where computers have always been utilized. These younger generations are becoming more adept at using these new types of media, even better than their elders. While I do have somewhat of a bias towards print media, I do see room for the use of different types of media. Different types of learners, for example visual learners, will have a better grasp with videos and will learn more from the visual media. If we can match innate traits and skills of individuals to the appropriate media, then we can create learners comfortable with their specific lens of education and who can utilize it to the fullest.

New Information about Media Literacy

While I browsed through the new blog I was following, entitled Center for Media Literacy, I discovered what the term actually meant. Originally, media literacy had a more brief definition as composed at the 1992 Aspen Media Literacy Leadership Institute: "Media Literacy is the ability to access, analyze, evaluate and create media in a variety of forms" (Center for Media Literacy).

However, over time, the definition needed to be enhanced. Now media literacy is: "a 21st century approach to education. It provides a framework to access, analyze, evaluate, create and participate with messages in a variety of forms — from print to video to the Internet. Media literacy builds an understanding of the role of media in society as well as essential skills of inquiry and self-expression necessary for citizens of a democracy" (Center for Media Literacy). This definition is very broad and deals with almost any type of media format. It's almost as if the definition must become more general because our world is getting more complex. In order to keep up with the increasing complexity of the world, we need to continue to make access to media, aka literacy, up to date. This site sounds like a good start for such a sizable objective. All of this information was new to me. I was intrigued when I first learned about information literacy and it seems like this is the next step in learning more.


Media Literacy: A Definition and More. Retrieved from

New Blogs I am following; Summary of RSS Feed

Though I follow many blogs from my previous use of the technology(however I admit that I barely kept up with them at all), for this assignment I have chosen a few blogs pertaining to my future career field. I have begun following a blog called Center for Media Literacy in order to learn more about the various types of information literacy. As I expand my thinking of what literacy is, I realize that literacy goes far beyond simple comprehension of traditional book or paper text. Also, because I am so interested in the various types of literature, considering that I am an English major, I have decided to follow a blog on Russian literature, which happens to be my favorite field of study right now. I am sure that any topic that I have an interest in will have a blog out there for it.