Voices of Media Literacy: International Pioneers Speak: Lesley Farmer Interview Transcript

DATE OF INTERVIEW: Wednesday, March 29, 2017



Our teachers still aren’t educated in media literacy, to this day. They still have kids doing posters, which is fine. That makes sense -- whether it’s digital or physical -- but what the teachers grade on is how neat the poster is, and did I use my glue stick right? Look at the rainbow colors! There is little sense of artistic principles, little sense of how you construct a message effectively. They have no clue to this day. Arts are still undervalued, and I guess I’m not surprised, but I’m sad. Why can’t teacher education programs be more aware of media and information literacy? Why don’t they see the importance of it? That truly surprises and saddens me.



 Dr. Lesley Farmer, Professor at California State University Long Beach, coordinates the Librarianship program. She also manages the CSU ICT Literacy Program. Dr. Farmer has worked as a library media teacher in K-12 school settings as well as in public, special and academic libraries. She served as International Association for School Librarianship VP Association Relations, chairs the IFLA School Libraries section, and coordinates the Education Section of Special Libraries Association professional development. Dr. Farmer received the 2011 ALA Beta Phi Mu Award for contribution to education, the 2015 SLA Anna Galler Award, and the ALS LIRT Library Recognition Award. Dr. Farmer is a frequent presenter and writer for the profession. Her latest books include Information and Digital Literacies: A Curricular Guide for Middle and High School Librarians (Rowman & Littlefield, 2015), Introduction to Reference and Information Services in Today's School Library (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014) and Library Services for Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ALA, 2013).




Selected Questions:

·      What started you, in terms of becoming involved with media education and information literacy? What was your inspiration?

·      What were some of the milestones in the media and information literacy field along the way?

·      Taking a step back, how far do you think the field has come in terms of being accepted and being able to meet the need out there?

For complete interview text go to PDF.