Media Landscapes: Civically Engaging Young Adults Through Media Literacy Education

The need for an active and engaged public that represents diverse communities, backgrounds, and beliefs has become more important now than ever before. This is evident with news headlines and propaganda that threaten the liberties of our nation and the ideals of our founding Republic. Young adults today have been bombarded on social media with headlines covering the perils of our nation such as police brutality, voter suppression, and a global pandemic. As a result, they have been compelled to take action and become civically engaged in the social media world. But without the skills to identify mis/dis-information and understand the influence of confirmation bias in the social media space, they may be unaware of how their efforts contribute to online polarization and other challenges. In this session, attendees will learn the importance of using media literacy to engage in public discourse with young adults about public issues. Attendees will gain strategies for engaging students with cyber citizenship skills, social media ethics, and civic engagement through participatory media

Jimmeka Anderson

Jimmeka Anderson is a Ph.D. candidate in the Curriculum and Instruction Urban Education program at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her research interests include critical digital media literacy education and technology inequity among historically marginalized students. She received her master’s degree in Educational Media with a focus on New Media Literacies at Appalachian State University. While serving as the Founder and Executive Director of I AM not the MEdia, Inc. for ten years, she has developed curriculum and award-winning community programs that empower youth through media literacy and media creation. Additionally, Jimmeka has served as the Chapter Lead for NC for Media Literacy Now, the creator of the Teen Media Literacy Conference in Charlotte, NC, and in leadership advisory roles with the National Association of Media Literacy Education (NAMLE), American Education Research Association (AERA), and American Library Association (ALA). Jimmeka has also served as a media literacy consultant for several national organizations such as the Women’s Sports Foundation, NAMLE, and 9 Story Media Group.


Prior to pursuing her Ph.D. degree, Jimmeka worked as a Library Outreach Coordinator for over ten years at Charlotte Mecklenburg Library and as a Course Instructor for five years with the Carolina School of Broadcasting where she taught adult students courses in Media Literacy, Media Ethics, and New Media. Jimmeka has been featured in WIRED Magazine and in the recently released Trust Me Documentary in Fall 2020. Her recent honors include the 2018 Crowning Achiever Award from The Crown Jewels (NC) Links, Inc. and the 2019 Excellence in Public Humanities Award from the NC Humanities Council. Jimmeka has contributed to academic publications in the Middle Grades Review and Educational Media International journals. She has written articles for the Voices of Youth Advocates Magazine and Family Online Safety Institute and has contributed several book chapters. Jimmeka’s forthcoming book Power Lines: Connecting with teens in urban communities through media literacy, along with co-author Kelly Czarnecki, is set to be published by ALA Neal-Schuman in Spring 2022.


September 14, 2021 – 1:00-2:00 PM
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