From the 1990s Russian media education specialists (U.Usov, L.Bazhenova, A.Novikova, G.Polichko, A.Spitchkin, A.Sharikov, A.Fedorov and others) have joined the international media educators’ community, participating in international conferences for media education (held in France, Canada, Austria, UK, US, Brazil, Spain, Greece, Switzerland, ), publishing their works in French, American, English, Australian, US, and Norwegian journals.
By the year 2001 the number of secondary and higher educational Russian
institutions training professionals in media, has quite grown. Besides
VGIK (Russian State Institute of Cinematography), School for Script
Writers and Film Directors, Russian Institute of Professional
Development in the Field of Film, now there are St.Petersburg State
University of Film and Television, Film-Video Colleges in Sergeev Posad
and St. Petersburg, film/television colleges in Irkutsk, Sovetsk, and
Rostov-on-Don. Professional media education is included into the
curriculum of St. Petersburg State Academy of Culture, St.Petersburg
Academy of Theatre Art, Institute of Professional Development of TV
& Radio Specialists (Moscow), Independent School of Cinema and
Television (Moscow), Grymov’s School of Advertising, Institute of
Modern Art (Moscow), New Humanities University of Natalia Nesterova
(Moscow), several schools of animation, etc.
First works summarizing general problems of media education, appeared
in 1990s (A.Sharikov, A.Fedorov, L.Zaznobina). In February 2000
(A.Fedorov and others) the first in Russia bilingual (Russian-English)
Internet sitehttp://www.medialiteracy.boom.ru (and after –http://www.edu.of.ru/mediaeducation) on media education was created. More than 20000 people visited the site during the first 7 years of its existence.
The same year staff of the Laboratory headed by L.Zaznobina in the
Russian Academy of Education opened one more Russian web site on media
The important event in media education development in Russia was the
registration of the new specialization (minor) for pedagogical
universities – ‘Media Education’ (№ 03.13.30) in 2002. Since 2002 this
specialization includes in education process in Taganrog State
Pedagogical Institute (head of this educational project is professor
A.Fedorov, media educators: I.Chelysheva, E.Murukina, N.Ryzhykh,
N.Babkina and others).
The mediaeducators team (head is Alexander Fedorov) from Taganrog State PedagogicalInstitute since 1994 published about 30 monographs (Fedorov, 2001; 2005; 2007and others), textbooks and more than 400 articles about media education andmedia literacy. This team also received the research grants (media educationtopics) from many Russian and foreign foundation (foundation of President ofthe Russian Federation, Russian Foundation for Humanities, Foundation ofRussian Ministry of Education, Kennan Institute (US), IREX (US), MacArthureFoundation (US), Open Society Institute (Soros Foundation, US), DAAD (Germany),Fulbright Foundation (US) and other).
In 2004, IPOS UNESCO “Information for All” (the headof this organization is A.Demidov) in cooperation with the South Urals MediaEducation Center conducted the interregional round-table discussion “MediaEducation: Problems and Prospects” in Chelyabinsk. The participants discussed the concept and notions ofmedia education and educational standards in this area and mapped out the waysof concerted efforts to be made by national and regional mass media in thecoverage of media education problems. According to the participants, mediaeducation is a way of shaping national information and education policies andpromoting information literacy, media culture of personality, and civilsociety. Media education was proclaimedas one of ways of the development of a national information and educationalpolicy, social integration, and media literacy.
The final document of the “round table”included suggestions to introduce a major specialty Media education with a qualification Media educator foruniversities of Russia; to develop the plan of effective realization of MediaEducation in various regions of the Russian Federation; to create a databankabout forms and methods of media education activities with the purpose of theanalysis and generalization of experience; to publish “Encyclopedia of Mediaand Media Education”; to support the regular release of a journal MediaEducation.
Another step of IPOS UNESCO “Information for All”(Russia) was the organization andparticipation in the All-Russian conference “Through Libraries – to theFuture”, which took place in Anapa (2005), supported by the UNICEF, Ministry ofEducation, the Federal Agency for Culture and Cinematography, KrasnodarRegional Library for Youth, Department of Culture of Krasnodar Region, National Fund forProfessional Training, The Russian School Library Association, RussianAssociation for Media Education (http://www.edu.of.ru/mediaeducation).
In the begin of XXIcentury Media Education Centers or projects (including media education/literacyconferences) were created in Belgorod (A.Korochensky and others), Byisk(V.Vozchikov and others), Chelyabinsk (A.Minbaleev and others), Ekaterinbourg(N.Kirillova and others), Irkutsk (L.Ivanova and others), Krasnodar (T.Shak andothers), Omsk (N.Hilko and others), Perm (P.Pechenkin and others), Samara(A.Sharikov and others), Tomsk (I.Zhilavskaya and others), Toliatti and othersRussian sities.
Within the frameworkof conferences the reports directly concerning questions of media education,problems of the organization of multimedia databases, electronic libraries, andmediateques in libraries for children and youth were heard. Important objective for Rusaioan mediaeducators is to open (get it registered by the Russian Ministry of Educationand Sciences) a new university major speciality (major) “Media Education”within the framework of which it will be possible to prepare professional mediaeducators for universities and schools.
Another events werethe presentation of a multimedia product of IPOS UNESCO “Information for All”(Russia) – a CD Media Education. Media Pedagogy. Media Journalism (also sponsored by the administration ofHanty-Mansijsk Autonomous Region – UGRA, Russian Association for Film and Mediaeducation and Taganrog StatePedagogical Institute (http://www.tgpi.ru).This CD includes monographs, teaching manuals, programs and articles. And arecently fulfilled initiative is Media Literacy page on the UNESCO MoscowOffice website: http://www.unesco.ru/eng/pages/bythemes/stasya29062005124316.php
As one of outcomes of modern mediaeducation in Russia is the publication of the new specialized journal MediaEducation was initiated —you may read the full texts of all its issues at the website of the IPOS UNESCOInformation for All Program (http://www.ifap.ru/projects/mediamag.htm).
The next project of IPOS UNESCO “Information for All” (Russia)and Russian Association for Film and Media Education will be the “Encyclopedia of Media and MediaEducation” with contributions by the leading experts in the field of theory andhistory of mass communication and media education.
Within the context of increasing interest to mediaeducation worldwide, the UNESCO program’s support, recent developments such asthe introduction of a pre-service teacher training, and the systematicpublication of a journal, media education has good prospects in Russia.
Many media literacy projects arerealized due my colleagues from the Russia. A network of school mediathekas(libraries containing books, journals, audio and video cassettes, CDs, DVDs,etc.) has been created in recentyears, and a number of most interesting creative network projects forschoolchildren have been launched—these directions are guided by Y.Yastrebtseva. Her colleagues, L. Bazhenova and Y. Bondarenko, aim their effortsat promoting media educational work in Moscow schools. During the lessons, playactivities are often used (especially with younger children), students performcreative tasks (making a short video film, a photo collage, etc.), and havecollective discussions of media texts. Similar work is going on in schools anduniversities of other Russian cities — Tver, Voronezh, Samara, Perm,Chelyabinsk, Rostov, Taganrog, Tambov, Krasnodar, Yekaterinburg, Volgodonsk…For example, the recognizable symbol of media education in Voronezh is theStudent Film and Video Club, where participants come to discuss especiallysignificant or problem films — the club is led by S. Penzin, an art critic andassistant professor of the Voronezh State University. Professor G. Polichkofrom the State University of Management is the initiator of annual mediaeducational festivals for schoolchildren — with master classes, talks given bywell-known figures of media culture, and collective discussions… Such festivalshave taken place for about 10 years in different Russian cities. In 2005, theCenter for Media Education in the city of Togliatti organized a Virtual Tourof the Media Land, an Internet gamefor schoolchildren (http://mec.tgl.ru/modules/Subjects/pages/igra/priilog_1.doc).The participants form teams, visit some Russian media educational websites,study their content, answer questions, accomplish creative tasks, and createpresentations. To find out more about the methods used in particular mediaeducational classes your readers may visit the “Biblioteka” (Library) section of the RussianAssociation for Media Education website.
In the West and in Russia, thepreference in media education today is given to the critical thinking /critical autonomy development theory, the cultural, sociocultural, and semiotictheories. Less popular is the protective theory, focusing upon screening theaudience from the harmful influences of the media. However, my impression isthat Western media educators seem to prefer the practical approach (with the emphasis on teaching practicalskills for working with media equipment) and the consumption and satisfying (the needs of the audience) approach, whereas theirRussian colleagues often favor the artistic approaches in media education. Universally recognizedare the achievements of our colleagues from Canada and Australia, where mediaeducation is a compulsory school discipline. The philosophy and practices ofthe leading British, French, and American media educators have also obtainedgeneral recognition. Traditionally strong are the positions of media educationin Scandinavian countries. As for the East European ones, the world obviouslyknows more about the experiences of Russian and Hungarian media educators,whereas the achievements of Poland, the Czech Republic, and Romania in thissphere remain little-known—not least on account of the language barrier. Ofcourse, Canada and Australia are far ahead of others in making media educationa reality. Here in Russia we have much to learn from them.
FedorovA., Novikova,A. and all. (2005). Media Education. Media Pedagogic. MediaJournalism. Moscow: UNESCO Program‘Information for All’. CD. 1400 p.
Fedorov,A. (2001). Media Education: History, Theory and Methods. Rostov:CVVR. 708 p.
Fedorov,A. (2007). Development ofthe Media Competence and Critical Thinking of Pedagogical University’s Students. Moscow:IPOS UNESCO Program ‘Information for All’, 616 p.
Sharikov, A.(1990). Media Education: International and Russian Experience.Moscow: Russian Academy of Education, 66 p.