SPJ Goes to High Schools

Members of SPJ at a High School

The Arkansas Tech chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists visited local high schools to teach students about media literacy and hosted a contest that addressed the question, “What does media literacy mean to me?”

The members of SPJ took turns teaching common term definitions, tips on how to be an effective consumer of news and how to stop the spread of fake news.

“Understanding what we are scrolling through and consuming is extremely important in the digital world we live in.  And who better to share this than college students majoring in journalism,” Megan Toland, SPJ faculty advisor, said.

The media literacy contest was created because “[we wanted] to share with high school students the online world’s impact on you. And that we all need to take responsibility for what we are consuming. Additionally, we don’t just need to know the importance; we need to know how to verify if the information or the source is accurate, credible and trustworthy.  Therefore, our goal became two-fold:  to define media literacy and to provide tips on how to become a smart consumer of the media,” Toland said.

ATU SPJ students selected the winners for Dardanelle High School. They were Lisbeth Flores (first place), Chris Miller (second place), Kirsten McConnell (third place), and Luis Garcia (honorable mention).

“I am incredibly pleased with how the project went, and I feel as though our goal was accomplished of reiterating the point of being aware of what you are reading and watching online,” Toland said.

For more information about SPJ, follow on Instagram @atuspj.