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08 December 2006


Research and Insights into the Effectiveness of Media Literacy Instruction

Health professionals have increasingly recognized media use as a significant influence on American’s health. Can media literacy education — teaching youth to employ critical thinking skills to understand media messages — be used to help students resist harmful behaviors and lifestyle choices?

That’s what Mary E. Carney, MPH, the inaugural winner of Cable in the Classroom’s Media Smart Research Awards, wanted to find out. Her paper, Using Media Literacy Education for Health Promotion: A Qualitative Meta-analysis of Effective Program Components [PDF], examined 24 peer-reviewed evaluations of media literacy interventions with a health-promotion focus. The findings and implications from her work contain important insights that should inform the development of health education programs and media literacy curricula.

We are proud to make available the full text of her research paper, as well as a podcast of Carney's recent presentation [MP3, 29MB] to the Cable in the Classroom (CIC) National Education Advisory Board and esteemed guests (as introduced by Frank Gallagher, CIC's Director of Education and Media Literacy).

Launched in 2006, Cable in the Classroom's Media Smart Research Award is given annually to a graduate student for research in media literacy instruction. It is one component of Cable in the Classroom’s efforts to encourage the teaching and learning of media literacy in American schools and homes. By publicizing and supporting the research of emerging media literacy scholars, CIC aims to expand the knowledge base on the status and effectiveness of media literacy instruction.

Applications for the 2007 Media Smart Research Awards are now being accepted.

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