Criteria for A Successful Media Education Program

A study of Media Education around the world, shows that there are nine factors which appear to be crucial to the successful development of Media Education in secondary schools.

  1. Media Education, like other innovative programs, must be a grassroots movement and teachers need to take a major initiative in lobbying for this.
  2. Educational authorities must give clear support to such programs by mandating the teaching of Media Studies within the curriculum, establishing guidelines and resource books, and by making certain that curricula are developed and that materials are available.
  3. Faculties of education must hire staff capable of training future teachers in this area and offer courses in Media Education. There should also be academic support from tertiary institutions in the writing of curricula and in sustained consultation.
  4. In-service training at the school district level must be an integral part of program implementation.
  5. School districts need consultants who have expertise in Media Education and who will establish communication networks.
  6. Suitable textbooks and AV material which are relevant to the country/area must be available.
  7. A support organization must be established for the purposes of workshops, conferences, dissemination of newsletters and the development of curriculum units. Such a professional organization must cut across school boards and districts to involve a cross section of people interested in Media Education.
  8. There must be appropriate evaluation instruments which are suitable for the unique quality of Media Studies.
  9. Because Media Education involves such a diversity of skills and expertise, there must be a collaboration between teachers, parents, researchers and media professionals.
Author Bio: 

John J. Pungente, SJ, has worked in media education since 1964. He co-authored Media Literacy: A Resource Guide (1989), Meet the Media (1990), More than Meets the Eye: Watching TV Watching Us (1999), and Finding God in the Dark: The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Go To The Movies (2004). Pungente is creator and host of the award-winning television series SCANNING THE MOVIES, which premiered in 1997. He is producer of the award winning teaching kits SCANNING TELEVISION (1996) and SCANNING TELEVISION 2 (2003). Pungente is president of the Canadian Association of Media Education Organizations (CAMEO.)