Media Literacy



READING:   Chapter 1 “Mass Communication, Culture, and Media Literacy”
QUIZ:   Chapter 1 Quiz on Blackboard

ASSIGNMENT:   Watch a movie or TV show and submit a 500 word story on your worldview/personal status before your engagement with the medium and after.   Note what were you thinking about before you watched the program.   For example, “Before watching [movie/TV show] I was thinking about how much homework I had to do and that I needed to clean the kitchen.”   I don’t care about why you picked this show, what you thought the film was going to be like, or anything you’d heard about it.   That’s not the point. This is not a film review.   The point is to see how watching this show redirected your train of thought.

Then describe what you’re thinking about afterward.   Be specific about how exactly the program affected what you were thinking about after the program.   I’m looking for change.   How did it change you, or at least what you were thinking about, even if just temporarily?   Did it make you more materialistic, more frightened of violence, feeling less satisfied with your life?   Or did it have a positive effect on you somehow?   Did it make you want something you didn’t want before watching the show?   Mass Media doesn’t always tell us what to think, but what to think about.   Again, I don’t care what you thought about the cinematography or those elements of the film.   What did the film get you thinking about in your life?
When is this due?   By Sunday at midnight of the week it is assigned.

How do you turn this in?   Email it to me at

DISCUSSION:   Head on over to the Conference Room and reply to this “Media Literacy Discussion” post:

To start off we’d like to get to know you better by hearing about times in your life when the mass media had a significant impact on your thoughts and/or behavior in a good or bad way.  For example, did you every watch a violent movie as a kid and then want to go out and play fight with your friends? Or have you ever watched a movie about an exotic location and thought, “I’d really like to go there some day.”?  Maybe you just watched a fast food commercial and though, “Man, I’m hungry.” I remember one time I was watching one of the Fast and the Furious movies when I got a call from a family member that they were having a medical emergency and needed me to take them to the hospital right away.  Let’s just say my driving may have been modestly influenced by the behavior I’d just seen on TV. From the significant to the mundane, give us examples of times when the mass media has had a noticeable affect on your thoughts, actions, or beliefs.

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