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JMI unveils four-year media literacy plan


The Jordan Times


AMMAN — The Jordan Media Institute (JMI) has presented an executive strategy to the government for carrying out the information and media literacy national initiative, to be implemented over four years in four spheres, according to JMI Dean Bassim Tweisi. 
"The plan is built on the theory of change . . . expansion and sustainability," and has recently been endorsed by the government, Tweisi told The Jordan Times over the phone on Monday.
The first sphere of the strategy is public-school education, as new units on information and media literacy will be added to the curricula of the seventh, eighth and tenth grades, Tweisi said, adding that these concepts and media skills will be also taught during activity classes from the fifth to the tenth grade. 
As part of the expansion process, the JMI will hold training workshops for teachers (training of trainers, or the ToT), who in turn will hold ToT sessions to further spread the knowledge, the JMI dean said, noting that the curriculum for these trainings will be developed in cooperation with the National Centre for Curriculum Development.
"Public and private universities are the focus of the plan's second aspect, as there will be capacity building for the academic staff, with 150 staff members undergoing training for a new obligatory course to be added to students' university plan," he said.
This second field includes establishing 30 student clubs specialising in media education.
The third aspect will offer training at 160 youth centres in the Kingdom's 12 governorates in cooperation with the Ministry of Youth, Tweisi said, noting that this will also be followed by a ToT to build capacities within the ministry itself.
This aspect also includes working with 36 centres for excellence, also affiliated with the Ministry of Youth, which will add a unit for media production based on moral and professional principles taught in the media literacy material. 
The fourth and last sphere is civil society institutions, and this part of the plan will include small grants given to institutions with innovative ideas and proposals to teach and spread media literacy, enabling them to implement those ideas.
Tweisi added that as part of the plan, an online platform will also be launched to serve in teaching media literacy.
All four aspects of the plan will be implemented simultaneously in coordination with the concerned government entities, with the JMI the executive arm of the plan, the JMI dean said, noting that preparations will be completed this year, while execution and manifestation will start next year.
Over the past five years, the JMI implemented a series of experimental projects in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, the United Naitons Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisaiton (UNESCO) and other entities, and carried out workshops, clubs and activities in schools in Amman, Irbid and Zarqa, Tweisi said.
"We also implemented a pilot project with the Ministry of Youth, funded by the German Development Agency GIZ and media awareness projects with Sweden, and also a project for the All Youth Commission in cooperation with the King Abdullah II Fund for Development," Tweisi added.

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