Media Literacy Resources
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Critical thinking skills are imperative for resisting harmful disinformation and countering hate and bias. Educators, parents and caregivers should be essential partners in introducing media literacy concepts to children and young people.

In today’s society, adults and young people are exposed to a lot of information from a variety of media sources, most notably digital platforms, television, radio and print materials. And in a politically contentious and polarized climate, information can be manipulated to mislead and to cause harm. Rhetoric and catchphrases—especially about complex and divisive issues—are abundant and often attempt to reduce complex concerns to simplified and biased explanations. Therefore, being discerning about the information around us is crucial.

These questions are a starting point for analyzing the accuracy and reliability of media information:

  • What is the source of the information? Is there a particular organization or person providing the information? Do they have a specific perspective or purpose? Is the source a journalism organization with rules on accuracy and honesty?
  • Is the information factual and verifiable through other journalistic and reliable sources?
  • What is the purpose of the information? Is there bias in the language and perspective? Some media pieces are opinions designed to persuade. Is the story objective journalism or an opinion piece?
  • Why and how was this story developed? Whose perspective is given, and whose is missing? What does the given perspective and missing point of view reveal about the information? What questions does this raise?

Thinking about what information is provided, the source, why a story is developed, and whose perspective is represented and whose is missing can be valuable in evaluating accuracy and reliability and in understanding the intent behind the media information.

We offer the following resources to help learn about and teach the skills necessary to be discerning about the information around us.

Media Literacy Articles and Resources

“Building Resilience Against Manipulative Disinformation”
This article provides recommendations for supporting young people’s mental health and well-being in addressing vulnerabilities to harmful disinformation.

“Teaching Mindful Media Consumption”
In this LFJ webinar, experts in the field from IREX and Columbia (Missouri) Public Schools introduce media literacy concepts and how they can be used to resist manipulative information. In addition, the webinar highlights real-world implementation models and resources.

“Reimagining Digital Literacy Education To Save Ourselves”
This article examines how misinformation and online hate are crisis-level threats to democracy and liberation movements. Digital literacy education must be among the solutions.

Against Hate: Media Literacy and Other Tools for Combating Extremism
This webinar from LFJ, the SPLC's Intelligence Project and Retro Report provides tools for responding to hate and antisemitism and developing media literacy. Learn about the ways hate has shown up in schools and communities, past and present, and explore the connections between media literacy and combating hate and bias.

“Prevention and Resilience: Supporting Young People Through Polarizing Times”
During this time of political and social turmoil, build networks of trusted adults to help young people understand, contextualize and counter manipulative and harmful information.

“Whole-of-Community Resilience”
This article contends that helping young people build resilience against manipulative extremist narratives and conspiracy theories requires all adults in a young person’s trusted network to be equipped with the skills and knowledge to intervene.

Combating Online Youth Radicalization
This webinar from LFJ, SPLC’s Intelligence Project and American University’s Polarization & Extremism Research & Innovation Lab (PERIL) presents tools for combating the radicalization of young people online. Learn about the relationship between digital literacy and radicalization, become familiar with warning signs, and examine the ways online hate affects targeted groups. In addition to directly addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on radicalization efforts, the webinar will cover tools for intervening with vulnerable students and responding when incidents occur.

Learning the Landscape of Digital Literacy
Digital literacy is more than the ability to identify misinformation or avoid bad guys online; it means being able to participate meaningfully in online communities, interpret the changing digital landscape and unlock the power of the internet for good. Digital literacy, in the modern United States, is fundamental to civic literacy. This comprehensive guide provides tools and resources for learning and teaching about the landscape of digital literacy.

Digital Literacy Framework
The LFJ Digital Literacy Framework offers seven key areas in which students need support developing digital and civic literacy skills. The numbered items in each box represent the overarching knowledge and skills that make up the framework. The bullets represent more granular examples of student behaviors to help educators evaluate mastery.

The Mind Online podcast series
Through conversations with teachers, librarians, scholars and reporters, this podcast series explores the critical aspects of digital literacy that shape how we create and consume content online. Discover what educators and students alike need to know—and how we can all become safer, better informed digital citizens.

Preventing Youth Radicalization: Building Resilient, Inclusive Communities
SPLC and the Polarization & Extremism Research & Innovation Lab (PERIL) are committed to providing resources to the people building community resilience against extremism and for a more just and inclusive society. The resource guides on this page provide strategies to address the threat of extremism through early prevention and noncarceral solutions. This page also provides supplemental material to deepen support for educators, counselors, coaches and others who work alongside youth.


Note: This resource page will be continuously updated to include and highlight new content on this topic.

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