Civic IDEA incorporates accessible technologies and a focus on connecting critical inquiry with active engagement in daily life. Youth who engage with the IDEA framework will learn to identify and investigate issues, deliberate around their values, express alternative narratives to current messages, and advocate for communities and issues that matter. Civic IDEA builds from research that explores the effectiveness of using data for teaching and learning in community contexts, on the potential for online deliberation to improve civil dialog and public engagement, on remix as enhancing critical inquiry and expression, and on advocacy as a means of bringing voice and agency more directly into the daily lives of young people.

Collectively, Civic IDEA prioritizes knowledge that is explicitly transformed into civic action taking, and that supports voice, agency and participation as the cornerstones for effective and safe engagement in daily life. Each module in the IDEA framework-Investigate, Deliberate, Express, and Advocate-is designed to create a pathway for the learner to move from the point of investigating information online, to deliberating about the information with peers, to forming personal expression, to transforming that expression into digital advocacy. Modules are anchored by interactive digital learning tools and series of activity guides that facilitate fun and creative inquiries. Collectively, these tools and guides are positioned to move learners from the point of critical inquiry to practicing media literacy that prioritizes active engagement and participation in daily civic life.

Research has also found that increased critical analysis and deconstruction skills can lead to increased cynicism and disengagement from media. Civic IDEA is positioned to build on the potential of media literacy to increasing meaningful engagement and active participation in daily life. The focus of this toolkit is to harness the availability of tools and technologies that can be incorporated in media literacy pedagogies for explicit civic adoption. Civic IDEA prioritizes how media literacy pedagogies and practices can incorporate civic action taking into their learning experiences.

Additional Information

Author(s): Paul Mihailidis

Published: May 31st 2018