• Unit 4: Critical Media Literacies and Associated Digital Skills (LiDA104)

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    In Unit 4 we explore the concept of media literacy and apply this knowledge to access, analyze, evaluate, and create digital media. Critical Media Literacies and Associated Digital Skills (LiDA104) is the fourth of four micro-courses for the Learning in a Digital Age course.

    Completing this unit should take you approximately 40 hours.

    Image credit: Broadcast Press by Skratos 1983, public domain

    • 4.1: Introduction to Media Literacy

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      In this subunit we explore the meaning of media literacy in a digital age. Media, as a form of communication, is never ideologically neutral. Therefore, it is important to develop critical skills to analyze and evaluate media online. Media literacy also encompasses the skills of creating media, so we encourage learners to participate in the optional photo challenge for each pathway in this micro-course.

      Upon successful completion of this subunit you will be able to:

        • Define media literacy for a digital age;
        • List issues associated with media literacy for youth and adults; and
        • Critically analyze a media release justifying the evaluation perspective.
    • 4.2: Mass Media

      In this subunit we investigate theoretical perspectives on mass media focusing on how the medium and organizations can influence the message. Media literacy requires you to develop a critical disposition for analysis and evaluation. We explore video and text resources from different sources, and you will apply your skills of discernment when reviewing online online resources. As a digital citizen, you should engage in ethical an ethical learning process: the diverse global audience will not tolerate flaming, trolling, or inappropriate behavior.

      Upon successful completion of this subunit you will be able to:

        • Summarize the mainstream technologies for mass media since the invention of movable type and the printing press
        • Distinguish the role of the media in society and list examples of different types of power exerted through various platforms.
        • Explain the meaning of “the medium is the message.”
        • Identify examples illustrating the filters of editorial bias in mass media.
        • Explain how hidden ideology can bias representation of race, gender, ethnicity and religion in the mass media.
        • Describe the influence of citizen journalism on mass media.
        • Reflect on the effect social media, the internet and globalization have on society and popular culture.
        • Reflect on the implications of "fake news" for digital learning and your chosen area of work; and
        • Analyze the effect of the medium and publisher on media news coverage.
    • 4.3: Web Literacy for Fact-Checking


      The web is unique and differs substantially from traditional print materials. This learning pathway will focus on practical strategies, tactics and tools to support learners when analyzing and evaluating contemporary news and other resources on the web.

      Upon successful completion of this subunit you will be able to:

        • Source previous fact-checking work using site restricted searches, reputable fact-checking sites and critically assessing Wikipedia articles on the respective topic.
        • Apply “upstream” strategies to identify original sources taking knowledge of sponsored content, syndication and digital tactics to source viral content and original image sources into account.
        • Read laterally consulting third party resources to evaluate authority of the source and consulting high quality secondary sources.
        • Verify the identity of a Twitter account.
        • Use the wayback machine to assess the history of selected websites; and
        • Apply Google techniques to support your fact-checking work.
    • 4.4: Create Media

      Social-media-devices.jpgThe ability to create media is a key component of the definition of media literacy. In this subunit we focus on developing digital skills for different media modalities to prepare to create a multimodal presentation. This subunit is assembled as a progression from simple to more complex objectives that will enable you to:

        • Create static images (remixing scalable vector graphics to produce a diagram);
        • Create moving images assembled from static images (GIF animation for visual interest or explanation of a concept);
        • Generate a sequence of static and moving images for a web-based presentation (using the Reveal.js framework for online presentations);
        • Record and remix audio (generating an audio file from multiple tracks for inclusion in a video).

      These component skills will enable you to assemble and remix a multimodal online presentation.

      Upon successful completion of this subunit you will be able to:

        • Generate a diagram by remixing openly licensed scalable vector graphics resources for inclusion in your multimedia presentation;
        • Produce an animated GIF from a sequence of static image file frames;
        • Produce and share an online presentation (without audio) using web-based technologies; and
        • Generate an audio file from multiple audio tracks.
    • LiDA104 Edubit Assessment

      Assessment Competency: Develop critical media literacy skills and use multimodal communication to express outputs of learning effectively in a digital online environment.

    • Course Feed for Unit 4 (LiDA104)

      The course feed harvests learner posts from selected Internet sites. You can post to the feed by logging in to the course resource site.