Dr Kelly Ku (centre) introduces the research findings


顧伊麗博士(中)介紹研究詳情

Date: 21 Jun 2018 (Thursday)

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HKBU research finds Hong Kong students’ critical news literacy has room for improvement

浸大研究發現中學生的新聞證據分折能力尚待提升

The Department of Education Studies (EDUC) and Centre for Child Development (CCD) conducted a research and found that social media is the most used platform by secondary school students for reading news. However, nearly half of them have no knowledge that social media filters news for different users. Regarding critical news literacy performance, participants have the best performance on “Distinguishing Facts and Claims” but have to improve upon “Evaluating Evidence”.
 
The HKBU interdisciplinary team was led by Assistant Professor of EDUC and Acting Director of CCD Dr Kelly Ku, who was the Principal Investigator of the research. Other members included Assistant Professor of EDUC Dr Lisa Deng, Assistant Professor of the Department of Journalism Dr Celine Song, and Assistant Professor of the Department of Government and International Studies Dr Kang Yi. Funded by the Public Policy Research Funding Scheme from Policy Innovation and Co-ordination Office of the HKSAR Government, their research entitled “Investigating Hong Kong Students’ Critical News Literacy in the Age of Social Media” aims to know more about Hong Kong secondary school students’ habit of reading news on social media and to assess their critical news literacy.
 
The team conducted a survey questionnaire and interviewed 1,505 Hong Kong students between the ages of 12 and 18 (878 were 15-18 years old and the remaining 627 were 12-14 years old) from July to December 2017 to know more about students’ social media news engagement, news-seeking motivations, trust in news as well as to assess their critical news literacy across different domains.
 
Based on the research, Social Media (34%) was reported as the most used platform for students aged between 15 and 18 years; outweighing Television News (31%), Internet News (24%), and Print News (9%). P
For students aged between 12 and 14 years, Television News (33%) and Social Media (32%) are the most popular news source. 
 
Regarding the use of social media for reading news, Facebook (52%) was the most used platform for following news among 15- to 18-year-olds, and YouTube (32%) among 12- to 14-year-olds. Research found that one in five teenagers would share or discuss news on social media on a daily basis and 3% of the interviewed students reported that they have no habit of following news.
 
Research data showed that about half of the interviewed students reported having no knowledge of news-feed algorithms employed by social media to filter news for different users, this percentage is higher in the group of students aged between 12 and 14 years, at 56%. About half the students who responded welcomed the news-feed algorithms as it allows easier access to news that they are interested in, however some indicated concern over the risk imposed, such as privacy exposure. The concern was slightly higher among the group of students aged between 15 and 18 years at 7.3%, compared to 5.7% for the group of students aged between 12 and 14 years. In addition, 40% of participating students reported a lack of trust in news found on social media.
 
Regarding critical news literacy, participating students performed poorest on “Evaluating Evidence”, best on “Distinguishing Facts and Claims” and satisfactorily on “Understanding News Content”.
 
Dr Ku said that news literacy, the critical-thinking skills for analysing and judging the reliability of news and information, has been put under the spotlight in many Asian and Western countries, particularly with the growing phenomenon dubbed “fake news”. She suggested related bodies in Hong Kong to introduce News Literacy Education in formal secondary-school education as soon as possible so that youngsters can know more about news production and the role of news media in a society so that they can be proactive and capable in analysing the truthfulness of news and information and enable them to think about social issues effectively.
 

教育學系和兒童發展研究中心研究發現,社交媒體是中學生閱讀新聞的首要平台,但當中約一半人不知悉社交媒體會自行為使用者篩選新聞;而新聞分析方面,中學生在區分事實與意見的表現最理想,但評估證據的能力則有待改進。
 
浸大的跨學系研究團隊由教育學系助理教授暨兒童發展研究中心署理主任顧伊麗博士擔任首席研究員,團員包括教育學系助理教授鄧麗萍博士、新聞系助理教授宋韵雅博士和政治及國際關係學系助理教授康怡博士。團隊獲香港政府政策創新與統籌辦事處公共政策研究資助計劃撥款資助,進行「探討社交媒體作為新聞平台的應用及香港學生的批判新聞識讀能力」研究,以了解香港中學生在社交媒體閱讀新聞的習慣,以及評估他們在不同新聞識讀範疇的表現。
 
團隊於 2017年7月至12月期間以問卷訪問及評估了1,505名12至18歲香港學生(當中12至14歲佔627名,15至18歲佔 878名)在社交媒體閱讀新聞的習慣、新聞搜索的動機、對社交媒體新聞的信任度,並評估他們在不同新聞識讀範疇的表現。  
 
研究發現,15至18歲的學生主要透過社交媒體閱讀新聞(34%),其次是電視(31%)及互聯網(24%),報章/雜誌等佔9%;而12至14歲的受訪者則主要透過電視(33%)及社交媒體閱讀新聞(32%)。使用社交媒體閱讀新聞方面,15至18歲的學生主要使用「面書」(52%),12至14歲的則主要使用YouTube(32%)。20%受訪學生會每日都會在社交媒體平台討論或分享新聞。至於沒有追蹤新聞習慣的受訪學生有3%。
 
研究亦顯示,只有一半受訪者知道社交媒體會自行因應使用者的喜好而挑選新聞,其中12至14歲受訪者佔的比例更多達56%。接近一半受訪者歡迎社交媒體為他們挑選新聞,因為可以更便捷地閱讀喜歡的新聞種類。不過7.3%的15至18歲受訪學生擔心個人私隱或喜好被披露(12至14歲則為5.7%),亦有四成對社交媒體上載的新聞真確性存有懷疑。
 
在新聞識讀能力方面,受訪學生在「區分事實及意見發表」的表現最理想,在「明白新聞內容」方面表現亦令人滿意,但在「證據評估」方面的得分最低。
 
顧伊麗博士表示,由於近年出現不少假新聞,不少西方及亞洲國家越來越重視「新聞識讀」,即分析及判斷新聞及資訊真確性的能力。她建議,香港有關部門應盡快將新聞識讀的理念引入中學教育中,讓學生了解新聞的製作過程及新聞在社會扮演的角色,並積極主動及有能力地審視新聞信息的真確性,從而更有效地關注社會議題。