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The challenge:

It’s getting harder to separate fact from fiction

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The effect:

26% of U.S. adults surveyed could correctly classify all five factual statements presented to them.

35% of U.S. adults surveyed could correctly classify all five opinion statements presented to them.

96% of U.S. high school students surveyed failed to challenge the credibility of an unreliable source.

Even the most sophisticated audiences find it hard to distinguish between legitimate news — information gathered in a dispassionate search for facts — and materials that are created to persuade, sell, mislead or exploit.

Our mission

Our mission: The News Literacy Project, a nonpartisan education nonprofit, is building a national movement to advance the practice of news literacy throughout American society, creating better informed, more engaged and more empowered individuals — and ultimately a stronger democracy.

Our vision: News literacy is an integral part of American life, and people of all ages and backgrounds know how to identify credible news and other information and understand the indispensable role a free press has in a democracy, empowering them to play a more equal and active role in the civic life of the country.

Organizational values

What we believe

We are living in the most challenging and complex information landscape in history. News literacy education empowers people with skills to successfully navigate this landscape. People who are exposed to the News Literacy Project’s programs learn how to identify what they can trust, share and act on, and they become better-informed, more engaged and more equal participants in the civic life of their community, their country and the world.

We believe that the standards and ideals of fact-based journalism — especially the process of verification — are the best means by which to measure the credibility of news and other information. We also recognize that verifiable information includes research, data, context and reliable sources as key elements in formulating facts.

Our commitment to the First Amendment is absolute. We cannot sustain our democracy — nor build a more equitable future — without full access to facts and credible information that comes from a variety of sources representing a full range of experiences and viewpoints.

How we achieve what we believe

Because information today is shaped by constant change, including in the creation and distribution of misinformation and disinformation, we continuously work to improve our programs and resources to produce tools that are consistently useful for all communities.

We are independent and rigorously nonpartisan. Our audience can trust that NLP has final approval of the content of our programs and resources, which teach people how to think, not what to think. Educators can trust that we focus on the resources and skills that students need to master news literacy. We recommend that educators, students and the general public go to standards-based media organizations for reliable information, but we do not endorse specific news outlets.

Our work culture embraces diversity and inclusion to ensure a plurality of perspectives and agency. By prioritizing inclusion and belonging among our staff, board, partners and schools, we produce more resonant and representative programs for educators, students and the public, whoever and wherever they are.

We collaborate with educators to meet their needs in teaching news literacy, and we partner with educational, media and other organizations to expand our reach and impact beyond the classroom. We welcome input from teachers, journalists and other experts — and from all who share our commitment to facts, fairness and civic engagement. Through this collaboration, we aim to learn from and connect with individuals and groups that represent a wide range of identities, life experiences and perspectives.

Public Solution Statements:
News literacy is the foundation, but not a singular answer.

Educating and empowering the individual to be more discerning consumers of news and information (news literacy) is foundational to strengthening our democratic society. News literacy helps people civically engage in more meaningful, authentic and empowering ways while also helping people hold news media accountable. In fact, news literacy is a precondition of a modern democratic society. But it’s not a panacea and must be accompanied by a holistic societal approach to the challenges of disinformation.

  • Provide and enforce clear community standards.
  • Pursue the removal of malicious accounts, including those dedicated to pushing extremism and disinformation.
  • Design adjustment of algorithms to reduce the spread of misinformation and to promote credible information; and to help reverse political division and polarization.
  • Update standards and practices to promote public understanding, including:
    • Clearly distinguishing straight news reporting from other types of content, including opinion pieces and branded content
    • Being transparent about coverage choices (news judgment, usage standards, sourcing guidelines, etc.)
  • Prominently correct errors of fact and clarify when coverage falls short of standards and explain how the lapse occurred.
  • Push back against mis- and disinformation by calling it out and debunking it.
  • Improve newsroom diversity, including at the leadership level, to better reflect the community and be transparent about methods and progress toward this goal.
  • Encourage and fund civics education that includes media literacy education.
  • Require media literacy education with the vigor given to ELA and math, including specific learning standards and a graduation requirement and a professional pedagogy.
  • Develop media literacy pedagogy in teacher preparation and certification programs.
  • Fund nonprofit efforts to support high quality civics and media literacy education.
  • Fund efforts to rebuild sustainable local news media infrastructure.
  • Help raise awareness about the civic impact of misinformation and the importance of news media literacy.
  • Provide employees with news media literacy learning opportunities, including access to high-quality resources.
  • Raise awareness about the civic impact of misinformation and the importance of news media literacy.
  • Provide news media literacy programming/learning opportunities, including access to high-quality resources.

Our programs work.

96% of teachers said in a survey that Checkology was better than other news or media literacy resources they have used in the classroom. We also measure students’ knowledge before and after they complete Checkology lessons. During the 2022-23 school year, after completing Checkology lessons:

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87% of students correctly identified fairness as a standard of quality journalism – a gain of 17 percentage points from pre-assessment.

85% of students recognized that one of the appeals of conspiracy theories is the sense of community and belonging they provide – a gain of 27 percentage points from pre-assessment.

71% of students recognized when a social media post failed to provide credible evidence – a gain of 8 percentage points from pre-assessment.

Join us.

Explore our services

Educators: Check out our Checkology® virtual classroom, NewsLitCamp® and other resources.

Explore Services

Browse our tools

Learners of all ages: Get smart about news with our tips and tricks, and test your skills with quizzes for the classroom and beyond.

Browse Tools

Support our work

We want every student to develop an appreciation of quality journalism and the skills to become an active participant in civic life. Help us make this vision a reality.