Our Model -- For College Instructors

800px-fountain_pen_writing_literacy.jpgThe Stony Brook Model of News Literacy derives from a course first taught to undergraduates at Stony Brook University in 2006. The following year, with a start up grant form the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the university launched the Center for News Literacy housed in the School of Journalism.

Authored by the school's Founding Dean, Howard Schneider, the News Literacy course is designed to teach students how to use critical thinking skills to judge the reliability of news and information they need to be productive citizens.

We define News Literacy as:

The ability to use critical ­thinking skills to judge the reliability and credibility of news reports, whether they come via print, television, the internet or social media.

Empowering students with this life skill has never been more important amid a flood of misinformation often masquerading as fact-based journalism, increasingly fueled and amplified by social media. As a tributary of the broader discipline of Media Literacy, News Literacy integrates timely news stories into its curriculum not only to teach students how to interrogate information, but to engage them in learning about important developments in their community, the nation and world.



To learn more about the basics of our model, see the links below: 

Note: Please register or sign in to access all of the materials below

  • What is News Literacy? - An essay by former Center for News Literacy Director of Global Initiatives, Rick Hornik.

The Stony Brook Course

  • Outline of our model - Our model of teaching news literacy is based on our News Literacy course taught to undergraduates at Stony Brook University. View an outline of that entire course, along with descriptions of the objectives of each lesson, intended course outcomes, and a general list of course terms and vocabulary.

  • Course Syllabi - A model syllabus from the course taught at Stony Brook University


News Literacy Course Lessons

  • Lesson Descriptions - A listing of all news literacy course lessons with short descriptions of each
  • Glossary of course vocabulary
  • The News Literacy Teacher’s Guide - This guide covers all of the key News Literacy concepts, with lessons, vocabulary, and examples culled from Stony Brook University’s News Literacy course. Each of the guide’s thirteen chapters also contain instructors’ answers to students’most frequently asked questions, giving teachers insight into students’ interests and concerns


Adoption of News Literacy 

Dozens of faculty members at colleges and universities across the United States have adopted and adapted Stony Brook University’s News Literacy curriculum for their courses. In addition to using our lessons in news literacy, media literacy, and mass communications classes, professors have incorporated them into reading, writing, history, and other courses.  See the list of university partners on this page.


The News Literacy Universe

See a listing of the Center for News Literacy’s Partners, both in the United States and around the world. See models of our curriculum from other locations.