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INFOMEDIA LITERACY: an educational basic for young people in the new information age

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The aim of this article is to introduce the concept of infomedia literacy, which refers to the ability to process critically all kinds of written information, sound, images, graphics and values transmitted by the new technology. This article argues that when information technology merges with communication technology, there is a need for a new form of literacy. The article is divided into two parts. The first part uses empirical data from Hong Kong to illustrate the necessity of providing infomedia literacy training to young people in schools. Adopting the perspective of socially constructed technology, the second part attempts to conceptualize infomedia literacy and define its rationales, aims, scope, key components and characteristics. A socially participatory approach of infomedia education is proposed. It is suggested that infomedia literacy as a life skill in the new information age has several components: (1) an understanding of the nature and functions of infomedia and critical awareness of their impact on individuals and society; (2) the skill of critical analysis of information transmitted through infomedia technology; (3) the skill of efficient search and selection of information; (4) knowledge to use infomedia technology for self-expression; (5) aesthetic appreciation; and (6) social participation by influencing the development of infomedia technology.
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Keywords: CONVERGENCE; INFOMEDIA LITERACY; INFOMEDIA TECHNOLOGY; NEW INFORMATION SOCIETY; SOCIALLY CONSTRUCTED TECHNOLOGY; SOCIALLY PARTICIPATORY APPROACH

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 1999

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