The Media & Information Literacy for Democracy project or #MIL4Democracy is an initiative of Out of The Box Media Literacy, a non-government organization working to mainstream media literacy in the Philippines through educational programs and campaigns. The project aims to promote the important link between media and information literacy (MIL) and democracy and civic engagement. By publishing a practical handbook and conducting training programs, OOTB’s #MIL4Democracy aims to assist Filipino educators in teaching their students the rights and duties of citizenship and the values of democracy through lessons on media and information literacy.
The #MIL4Democracy Handbook contains 18 lesson plans that tackle key issues on democracy: from our civil and digital rights to access, equality, free speech, expression, and press freedom, to the big challenges that modern democracies are facing today, such as disinformation, polarization, hate speech, surveillance, and cyberthreats, among others.
The lessons are anchored on relevant and important local case studies: events, texts, and social issues that reflect contemporary realities of the Philippines. They are also complemented by unique teaching and learning activities which challenge students’ skills not only in media critique and creation but also in research, deliberation, and problem-solving. Most importantly, the #MIL4Democracy lessons put front and center the democratic values that our youth must learn to embrace and cultivate: truth, equality, inclusivity, social justice, and participation.
The lessons are co-written by Out of The Box with the alumni of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) 2019 on “Promoting Media Literacy through Education.” The IVLP is the premier professional exchange program of the United States Department of State for current and emerging leaders in various fields. The #MIL4Democracy project was made possible with the support of the Embassy of the United States in the Philippines.
How to cite: Out of The Box Media Literacy Initiative (2021). #MIL4Democracy Handbook: Teaching Media & Information Literacy for Democracy. www.ootbmedialiteracy.org/mil4democracy/
Marlon Julian S. Nombrado is the Head for Research and Publicity and Co-founder of Out of The Box Media Literacy Initiative. He is a critical media literacy educator with five years of teaching experience in both secondary and tertiary levels. He is currently a part-time lecturer at the College of Arts and Communication in the University of the Philippines Baguio. Marlon is also a graduate student of Communication at the University of the Philippines Diliman where he finished his bachelor's degree in Journalism in 2014.
Sarah Isabelle Torres is a development worker and advocate of media literacy education. She earned her BA Journalism and MA Media Studies from the University of the Philippines. She is the Head for Operations and Partnerships and Co-Founder of Out of The Box Media Literacy Initiative (OOTB). Sarah is also working as Coordinator of Reality of Aid - Asia Pacific (RoA-AP), a network of civil society organizations monitoring aid and development cooperation issues.
Arniel V. Ping is a licensed professional teacher serving at St. Stephen’s High School as the overall academic coordinator of the HS Department and concurrently coordinator of the Social Studies subject area. He is also the current president of the Philippine Association for Media and Information Literacy (PAMIL). He has served as a resource speaker in numerous Media and Information Literacy seminars and workshops for educators in the Philippines. He obtained his BSE major in Social Studies from the Universidad de Manila. He is a candidate for MAEd with a specialization in Social Science Education at the National Teachers College.
Gemma Soneja is a public high school teacher for more than 20 years at Parang High School, Schools Division of Marikina City. She is a Master Teacher II handling Araling Panlipunan subjects in the Junior High School and Media and Information Literacy (MIL) in the Senior High School.
Joeven R. Castro was former Vice President for Academic Services of Far Eastern University (FEU) before his study leave in January 2021. He is currently a full-time PhD student at The University of Auckland, New Zealand. Joeven’s MIL advocacy engagements are through the Philippine Association of Communication Educators as its officer, FEU as faculty of the Department of Communication, and the National Council for Children’s Television as its former national resource speaker. Joeven also co-founded “Tama Raw? The Anti-Infodemic Campaign of FEU” that features the campaigns of students against information disorder.
Rechelle Ann Tolinero-Barraquias is currently the department chairperson of the Development Communication Department in Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan. She earned her master’s degree in Development Communication at the University of the Philippines Open University in 2016. She is the founder of the online campaign called The #SML (Social Media Literacy) Project which worked on making social media, particularly Facebook, a safe, accepting, tolerant and loving platform for young people. She has been in the teaching profession for more than 10 years and has been involved in several strategic communication projects and research works focusing on participatory communication and communication for development.
Marco M. Polo is Associate Professor, Communication and Journalism Department and concurrent Director for University Advancement at De La Salle University-Dasmarinas. He has over two decades of teaching experience. His MIL engagements are through his professional organizations, the Philippine Association of Communication Educators (PACE) and the Asian Media Information and Communication Center (AMIC). He is also an MIL resource speaker of the National Council for Children’s Television (NCCT). He holds a bachelor's degree in Development Communication (UPLB) and a master’s degree in Communication Management (AIJC). He is pursuing a doctorate degree at the Asian Social Institute.
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