Why Canadians must embrace media literacy


Canada has long been known as a pioneer in digital media literacy. Ontario was the first jurisdiction in the world to integrate it into curriculum and Media Literacy Week, an event now held in dozens of countries, which is aimed at raising awareness of media literacy, originated in Canada in 2006.

Today, however, we have fallen behind. In Canadian schools digital media literacy is often introduced late, relegated to optional subjects, or taught as separate topics — online safety, misinformation, film studies — rather than as an integrated discipline. Adult learners might have access to only a patchwork of mostly local programs, mostly aimed at teaching basic digital skills. A recent report from the Open Society Institute underlined this decline, finding that Canada ranks seventh in their media literacy index.

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