Less is more: teenager digital information literacy and parental rules

Botturi, Luca and Negrini, Lucio (2018) Less is more: teenager digital information literacy and parental rules. UNSPECIFIED. In: ICERI 2018, 12-14 November, Sevilla, ES.

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Abstract

Information literacy (IL) is the ability to locate, access, assess and use information from different sources, and represents a key dimension of digital and media literacy. Some recent studies indicate that IL is poorly developed among young people, and that educational institutions are not yet fully equipped to support its development. What strategies do young people enact when they search and select information online? How do they correlate with their personal characteristics? This paper presents the results of a survey-based study conducted in 2017 with 377 lower secondary school students in Northern Italy about their IL practices. The study focused on how students search for information online, what document formats they prefer, and the elements they rely on for assessing credibility. Such variables are analysed in relation with grade, gender, time online and the presence of parental rules for Internet use at home. The results indicate that while there are no or little significant differences across grades, gender and time spent online seem to matter, the presence of parental rules plays an important role: they affect not only the time spent online and the social setting in which the Internet is accessed, but also significantly correlate with more critical and effective online search and selection behaviours.

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