Media Education, Media Literacy and Digital Competence



Media, education, literacy, digital, media literacy, digital competence, media education


This article addresses some possible relationship between education and media in contemporary society and explores the role that formal education should play in both the integration of media in the curriculum and the digital literacy skills necessary for the 21st century. The authors discuss here different theories and approaches that have dominated international media studies, media education and media literacy in recent decades. Confusion and misunderstandings in terminology for contemporary literacy in a complex, global and intercultural environment are explored and the authors present some inclusive categories for 21st century literacy such as media literacy, digital, multimodal, critical and functional. Interpretations of media literacy and digital competencies are discussed with particular emphasis on the current European regulatory framework. The authors warn that reductionist interpretations that focus on applied technical competencies with devices, hardware and software have the potential to severely limit media literacy education. Instead, the authors stress critical approaches as central to media literacy. In addition to technical competency, the authors highlight the need to include a broader and deeper analysis of the social uses, attitudes, and values associated with new media tools, texts and practices..



How to Cite

Gutiérrez, A., & Tyner, K. (2012). Media Education, Media Literacy and Digital Competence. Comunicar, 19(38), 31–39. Retrieved from