The European Digital Media Observatory (EDMO) is running a training event for media literacy practitioners on “Evaluating the impact of media literacy initiatives” over two half days on the 24th and 25th of March.
Assessing the impact of media literacy interventions is notoriously difficult, as it is hard to measure the acquisition of skills, particularly with no standard baseline to refer to. The lack of established criteria and methods for assessing projects, along with perceived challenges, mean that many don’t even attempt evaluation. Of the 68 media and information literacy projects analysed by the Council of Europe’s Committee of experts on quality journalism in the digital age, one third did not undergo any form of evaluation or assessment.
LSE/Ofcom’s Rapid evidence assessment on online misinformation and media literacy noted the difficulty of assessing the effectiveness of current interventions to tackle misinformation: “In particular, efforts to educate audiences and change the ways they engage with information are fragmented across educational contexts, platform-specific initiatives, media-related initiatives and fact-checking services. As a result, their impact on audience knowledge, attitudes and behaviour towards misinformation is unclear.”
But as increased digital media literacy becomes ever more necessary in the complex online environment, as a tool against disinformation and more, it is crucial that media literacy practitioners are able to effectively monitor the results of their initiatives and measure these against their goals. In the absence of a widely agreed way to measure impact, this training session will provide useful examples of measurement and assessment.