Spanish study says public lacks critical reasoning of multimedia messages

Informed Citizens? Spaniards’ Capacity for Analyzing Audiovisual Messages Is Very Low, Study Suggests

The purpose of the study was to be able to infer whether or not citizens have sufficient knowledge and capacity to manage, analyze, participate in and evaluate different aspects related to the multimediated context in which they live. This is especially relevant, according to the researchers, if we consider that we live in a time in which technological mediation plays a huge role in our societies, and affects the ways in which we communicate, as well as the language that we use. This study, points out Professor Walzer, shows the urgent need to do away with the existing apathy with regard to this subject in terms of educational policy “Media education, communiceducation, cannot continue to exist randomly or on the sidelines of our concept of what is educational,” she explains, “because it constitutes a decisive area in the formation of the citizenry and in the cultivation of the multiple languages in which we express ourselves and enrich our culture and our social ties.”

Source: Science Daily

This article does not give much information on the study or how it was done so it is difficult to do your own interpretations. The authors, however, seem to stress that the population studied was disappointingly bad at evaluating and expressing media messages. The cause of that is surely very complicated but it isn’t good news. If valid, it reflects what many already know – our schools fail to teach how to apply critical reasoning to day-to-day activities. The authors identify the need for change.