Deep dive for policymakers into media and information literacy: UNESCO and the United Nations University prepare first online course

People’s lives depend on the trustworthiness and the reliability of the information they receive, process, and use for decision making. The quality of information we engage with largely determines our perceptions, beliefs and attitudes.
It is then urgent to afford all people with the competencies to search, critically evaluate, use, and contribute to information and media content, know their rights online and ethics about the access and use of information, understand how to combat online hate speech, and engage with media and ICTs to promote equality, freedom of expression, intercultural and interreligious dialogue, and peace, etc. UNESCO and partners around the world call this media and information literacy.

In this sense, promoting media and information literacy for all becomes a matter of public good.

This first Massive Open Online Course “Deep Dive for Policymakers into Media and Information Literacy” will target government officials and policymakers at national and institutional levels. It will be a self-paced online course focused on the application of media and information literacy to the public policy cycle from a multi-view perspective, and oriented through cases studies.

Media and information literacy for all is a potent means for empowering people to benefit more from new information flows and digital technologies as well as to self-protect from the rising misinformation. Designing, implementing, and monitoring sustainable actions on media and information literacy at the national and global levels require public policies. Now it is time to take new actions and strengthen existing ones.

Every government can formulate national media and information literacy policies. It is not a matter only for governments. Every institution also has the opportunity to develop internal polices and strategies to promote media and information literacy.

This online course for policymakers will further equip national and institutional leaders with tools to articulate and implement media and information literacy polices that will build critical minds beyond the present COVID-19 crisis. The course follows the publishing of the UNESCO resource Media and Information Literacy Policies and Strategies Guidelines.

By taking this MOOC on media and information literacy, national and institutional policymakers can:

improve the impact and quality of public service at citizens’ disposal,
restore their trust in public institutions, and
stimulate their participation as active and empowered users.
Follow the UNESCO, the United Nations University E-GOV, and the Autonomous University of Barcelona’s websites for the launch of this open-access course later this year.


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