Keeley Library Student Pages:
Media Literacy

For background on the subject, consult general encyclopedias such as Americana, Britannica, Colliers, World Book, etc. Look for articles on "Media Literacy," "Propaganda," and "Advertising." To locate materials in the Keeley Library, see the section on Finding Your Way Around the Library.

Internet Resources

Critical Viewing Techniques

"Advertisers and programmers appeal to self esteem."

Illustrated or stated:
The ad shows a wealthy or important person driving a certain car. There is a beautiful woman seated next to him.

Whoever buys the car will be important and/or will attract beautiful women.

Advertisers and programmers appeal to fear."

Illustrated or stated:
The ad shows Jim's house after it has been burglarized. He did not have Brand Y security system installed.

Anyone who does not have Brand Y security system installed will be burglarized and suffer the same losses Jim did.

"Advertisers and programmers appeal to the emotions ..... rather than to the intellect."

Illustrated or stated:
Joe didn't use Brand X toothpaste, so his teeth are yellow. Consequently, the attractive woman in the ad was not interested in him.

If you use Brand X toothpaste, you will become more appealing and will attract beautiful women.

"Advertisers and programmers appeal to a desire to associate with famous people."

Illustrated or stated:
Basketball star, Joe Famous, is insured with X Life Insurance Company and is telling you how wonderful the insurance is.

This must be a good company if Joe Famous uses it and is publicly giving it his approval.

Some Critical Viewing Activities

During a television ad, cover the screen so that you only hear the words. Decide if the ad makes sense and if it gives you reason enough to buy the product. Write down any emotional appeals the ad is making. Which emotions are they appealing to? Are they identifying with your age group or values? Will this make you want the product?
Identify and count the number of zooms, cuts, and other technical effects used to advertise the product. Would the product seem as glamorous without all the technical effects. What subject matter do the ads use to get you to buy the product? Is the subject matter overly concerned with sexual behavior? Does it identify with a certain lifestyle?

Library Catalog

To locate items in the library catalog, search in iBistro. You may want to limit your search to search only the Keeley Library, instead of all of the SAILS libraries. The following subjects are just some suggestions for your search:

SAILS Databases

As members of SAILS, Durfee students and teachers can access journal and newspaper articles as well as online reference books, from the library's computers and from home. Simply go to the online catalog page, access the online catalog, and click on Online Resources button.

Selected Reference Books

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Last Updated: December 12, 2013