Media education and literacy

Empowering citizens to analyze and understand how the news media works and how it keeps public officials accountable is important in a healthy democratic society. In coordination with the Internews Ukraine U-Media project, our partners promote media education and literacy for Ukrainian citizens, journalists, civil society and political activists and public officials.

Highlights

  • From 2014-2016 U-Media, with technical assistance from Internews Ukraine, conducted a study on implementation of media literacy education in secondary schools across Ukraine. Surveying teachers, administrators and students, the study revealed the impact and effectiveness of the program as well as potential areas for growth and revision.

  • In March 2016, The Academy of Ukrainian Press (AUP) administered the 4th International Research and Methodological Conference “Practical Media Literacy: International Experience and Ukrainian Perspectives” in Kyiv. The conference was organized in cooperation with the Ministry of Education and Science. More than 150 educators, librarians, civil society activists and media literacy trainers from Ukraine, Belarus and Sweden attended.

    During the conference, AUP, the Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University’s Institute of Journalism and the Maksym Rylskyi Institute of Art, Folklore and Ethnology in the Academy of Sciences presented a handbook on media education for high school teachers. The manual, published with support from the Dutch Government’s MATRA Program, is the first attempt to integrate media literacy into teaching social disciplines in high schools. The manual covers basic principles of media literacy and how to develop critical thinking skills.

    The conference was supported by the United States Agency for International Development; the Internews Network; Global Affairs Canada; and, the MATRA Program in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Netherlands.

  • In February 17, 2016, AUP, in cooperation with the Kharkiv Academy for Lifelong Education, conducted a workshop entitled “Implementing Media Education in Modern Lessons” for 70 teachers of the Ukrainian language and literature and the Russian language and literature. AUP is developing a practical media literacy guide as part of a course called “Humans and the World”.

  • On February 23 2016, AUP met with Minister of Education and Science Serhiy Kvit and representatives of Internews and USAID to discuss legal and regulatory support of teacher training for media education.

  • In March 2016, as part of the “Raising Citizen’s Media Literacy Through Libraries of the Sumy Region” project, the Bureau of Policy Analysis conducted media literacy training for librarians in the Sumy region. Participants learned to better recognize jeansa – the Ukrainian word for advertising disguised as editorial journalism. The Bureau also launched a telephone legal consultation hotline for access by librarians.

  • The Pylyp Orlyk Institute for Democracy (POID) conducted media literacy training in 2015 entitled “How Not to Become a Puppet of Information" at Korolenko National Pedagogical University in Poltava, as part of its local media monitoring activities. Regional POID expert and Chair of the Sumy Press Club, Alla Fedoryna, worked with freshmen and third-year journalism students to identify propaganda and fake text messages, headlines, photographs and videos. POID conducted a seminar on media literacy for deputies of the Chernivtsi Municipal Students Council at Chernivtsi National University (CNU) in December 2015 as part of the regional media monitoring project executed with support from the CNU’s Department of Journalism and the “Ukrainian Youth Club” NGO.

  • A month before local government elections in October 2015, Internews Ukraine organized a three-day camp in Kyiv for 30 journalists and civil society activists representing 15 Ukrainian oblasts. The objective was to utilize news media in designing local voter education campaigns for increasing voter turnout, discourage vote buying, mobilize young voters and generally encourage informed voting. With assistance from Internews Ukraine consultants, 16 innovative campaign ideas were generated. An independent jury selected 12 participants to receive small stipends to implement voter education and mobilization initiatives in 10 regions.

  • Internews Ukraine developed an online game, ElectUA 2015, to raise voter awareness of local election laws, offer constructive criticism of political advertising and combat election bribery. The game was played 261,891 times, received 4,335 likes on Facebook and received 1,580,668 hits on Google.