Journal of Children and Media | 07.30.15
In this Journal of Children and Media article, D&S researcher Monica Bulger seeks to address the dynamics of information evaluation among youth, investigating the attitudes of youth (aged 11–18) toward information credibility, their information evaluation practices, and the effects of developmental and demographic differences and information literacy training on young people’s information evaluation skills.
Abstract: Young people are increasingly turning to the Internet more than to traditional media and information sources to find information. Yet, research demonstrates suboptimal online information literacy among youth today, suggesting potential shortcomings in young people’s information consumption behaviors. To assess this, this study investigates several predictors of young people’s success in online information evaluation, including their awareness of credibility problems associated with digital information, their use of specific information evaluation practices, and their accuracy in credibility assessment. Results from a study of 2,747 11–18-year-old Internet users indicate both expected and surprising influences of young people’s cognitive development, decision-making style, demographic background, and digital information literacy training on their information evaluation awareness, skills, and practices. Theoretical implications and those for redesigning online information literacy interventions are discussed.