Chart 1. The experts’ attitude to variants of definitions of media education
Definitions of Media Education:
Numbers of experts, who basically agree with the given definition:
Numbers of experts, who basically disagree with the given definition:
-deals with all communication media and includes the printed word and graphics, the sound, the still as well as the moving image, delivered on any kind of technology;
-enables people to gain understanding of the communication media used in their society and the way they operate and to acquire skills using these media to communicate with others;
-ensure that people learn how to
* analyse, critically reflect upon and create media texts;
* identify the sources of media texts, their political, social, commercial and/or cultural interests, and their contexts;
* interpret the messages and values offered by the media;
* select appropriate media for communicating their own messages or stories and for reaching their intended audience;
* gain or demand access to media for both reception and production.
Media education is part of basic entitlement of every citizen, in every country in the world, to freedom of expression and the right to information and is instrumental in building and sustaining democracy” [Recommendations Addressed to the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization UNESCO. In: Education for the Media and the Digital Age. Vienna: UNESCO, 1999, p.273-274. Reprint in: Outlooks on Children and Media. Goteborg: UNESCO & NORDICOM, 2001, p. 152].
“Media teachers today use the term ‘media education’, ‘media study’ and ‘media literacy’ almost interchangeably. My personal preference is to use the term ‘media education’ as a broad description of all that takes place in media-oriented classroom. … “Media literacy” is the outcome of work in either media education or media study. The more you learn about or through the media, the more media literacy you have: media literacy is the skills of experiencing, interpreting/analyzing and making media products” [Worsnop, C. Screening Images: Ideas for Media Education (1999). Mississauga, Ontario: Wright Communications, p.x).
“Media education”is teaching about media, as distinguished from teaching with media. Ordinarily, media education emphazies the acquisition both of cognitive knowledge about how media are produced and distributed and of analytic skills for interpreting and valuing media content. In contrast, ‘media studies’ ordinarily emphasize hands-on experiences with media production” [International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences. Vol. 14 / Eds.N.J.Smelser & P.B.Baltes. Oxford, 2001, p.9494].
The number of experts, who suggested another definition turned out minimal (2 respondents). However, T.Shak wrote that it’s a “process of media study and study with the help of media, the result of which is the ability to 1) analyze, critically comprehend and create media texts; 2)distinguish the sources of media texts, their political, social, commercial and /or cultural interest, their context; 3) interpret media texts and values spread by media; 4) choose the correspondent media for the creation and dissemination of one’s own media texts and find the target audience; 5) get the opportunity for the free access to media both for perception and for production”.
In his turn, A.Guterrez Martin suggests his definition of multimedia education: “I have referred to multimedia education as that which, making use of prevailing technologies of the day, allows students to achieve those skills, knowledge and attitudes needed to : communicate (interpret and produce messages) utilizing different languages and media; develop personal autonomy and a critical spirit, which gives them the ability to… form a just and multicultural society in which to live side by side with the technological innovations of the day” [2, 12].
In our opinion, the definitions by A.Guterrez Martin and T.Shak do not contradict the UNESCO definition, giving some variations and amplifications.
The second point of our questionnaire offered three variants of the definitions of media literacy to choose from or disagree (Chart 2).