Date of Award

Summer 2015

Access Restriction

Campus Access only dissertations

Degree Name

Doctorate in Education

Department

Education

School or College

School of Education

First Advisor

Mary K. McCullough, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Jill P. Bickett, Ed.D.

Third Advisor

Rebecca H. Stephenson, Ph.D.

Abstract

In order to effectively teach students how to critically consume media it is paramount for teachers to be media literate (Ian & Temur, 2012; Keller-Raber, 1995; Schmidt, 2012). Using Freirean critical literacy as a theoretical framework, this case study investigated how a 60-hour teacher training program in media literacy promoting Catholic Social Teaching and how undergoing this training has influenced teachers’ perceptions of media literacy, Catholic Social Teaching, and the link between the two. As the researcher, I performed participant-observation as a trainee in the program. Five teachers, alumni of the program, participated in this study: one middle school teacher, three high-school teachers, and one college professor, all of them taught at Christian private schools. I recorded how participants applied the Media Mindfulness—a faith based media literacy strategy—in their practice as a response to the Church’s call for Catholic teachers to engage in media education (Benedict XVI, 2008; John Paul II, 1987, 1990, 1992, 2005). Findings show how the Media Mindfulness method helped teachers integrate media literacy in their practice, promoting student empowerment and character education. A follow up action research at a Catholic high school where teachers are trained in Media Mindfulness is recommended to find out: a) how the training influenced teachers’ confidence in integrating media education into their practice? b) to what extent students’ assimilation of Catholic Social Teaching concepts resulted from the teacher training program? c) and how training teachers in the media mindfulness model influenced the school’s culture in addressing social justice issues?

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