University of Missouri to Assess News Literacy Among High School Students


Columbia, MO – November 18, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — One of the important roles of journalism is informing the public about significant events & issues. However, that purpose requires an audience who critically thinks about what information they get in the media. This skill of critical thinking is more commonly known as “news literacy”. Assessing the level of a person’s news literacy has been a long-time challenging task for media researchers and educators. Now, University of Missouri scholars are developing methods to be able to measure the news literacy among key population demographics which is teenagers. University of Missouri Associate Professor of the School of Journalism & project’s lead researcher, Stephanie Craft says that understanding the news literacy is essentially important as the new technology makes the issue difficult.

With the internet and all the state-of-the-art gadgets, it is not easy for every individual to recognize trustworthy news sources and separate it from undependable news, Craft said. There are many confusion of the source of news. For that reason, figuring out what every individual understand about the news and how its news sources are identified will make it easier to understand how the news influence the public’s decision.

For this research, Stephanie Craft will coordinate with focus groups from Chicago high school students. The researchers will interact with the focus group to come up with a survey that can precisely measure the news literacy of the participants Stephanie Crafts also believes that this measuring instrument will be an essential step in assisting citizens to effectively understand media information and keep up with the trustworthy news about their communities.

This research project is sponsored by Robert R. McCormick Foundation with a $50,000 grant. The smaller grant is from the almost $5,000,000 in recent grants over the next 2 years to 22 organizations dedicated in escalating quality journalism, supporting news literacy & protecting the press freedom.

The Robert R. McCormick Foundation is committed to fostering communities of educated, informed and engaged citizens. Through philanthropic programs, Cantigny Park and museums, the Foundation helps develop citizen leaders and works to make life better in our communities. The Foundation was established as a charitable trust in 1955, upon the death of Colonel Robert R. McCormick, the longtime editor and publisher of the Chicago Tribune. The Robert R. McCormick Foundation is one of the nation’s largest foundations, with more than $1 billion in assets. For more information, please
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