Measuring News Media Literacy

News media literacy refers to the knowledge and motivations needed to identify and engage with journalism. This study measured levels of news media literacy among 500 teenagers using a new scale measure based on Potter’s model of media literacy and adapted to news media specifically. The adapted model posits that news media literate individuals think deeply about media experiences, believe they are in control of media’s influence, and have high levels of basic knowledge about media content, industries and effects. Based on measures developed to assess news media literacy, highly news literate teens were found to be more intrinsically motivated to consume news, more skeptical and more knowledgeable about current events than their less news literate counterparts.