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US schools make more use of BBC than of local media

More evidence of the success of the BBC’s news web site comes in an American report which found “the classroom use of of non-US websites, such as the BBC’s, even exceeds the use of local TV or newspaper sites.”

The report from the Harvard-based Carnegie-Knight Task Force on the Future of Journalism Education, finds use of the Internet is threatening the economic viability of local media and the contribution they make to local democracy.

From outside the US, my spin on this research is rather different: there are welcome signs that young people in the world’s only super-power are starting to lift their eyes to look at the world as well as their own back yards.

The task force which includes the deans of the leading US journalism schools, finds a decline in the use of local media in social studies, civics and government classes.

National news organisations such as CNN and the New York Times were cited by 66% of teachers as being frequently used. Non-US organisations such as the BBC were frequently used by 21% of teachers while only 15% said the same of local newspapers and 6% of local TV.

The report says the use of the internet in classrooms is certain to widen, and teachers have switched from hundreds of local news outlets to a smaller number of national ones.

The challenge for local media, says the report, is: “As students learn in the classroom to rely on websites such as cnn.com and bbc.com.uk, they will become accustomed to using these sites outside the classroom, thereby contributing to a permanent movement of audience away from local news outlets.”

While I believe strongly in the importance of local media, this underlines the value of the BBC to the UK. One its tasks, enshrined in its charter, is: “Bringing the UK to the world and the world to the UK.”

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  1. Proof of the BBC's online success in the States | Media | guardian.co.uk says

    […] grateful to Andrew Grant-Adamson for pointing to a fascinating report about the success of the BBC’s news website in the States. […]

  2. Readers Edition » Internet-News dominieren US-Schulen says

    […] Marken die Nase vorn. Die New York Times oder CNN nutzen 66% aller Lehrer, nicht-amerikanische Medien wie bbc.com kommen immerhin auf 21%. Die Lokalzeitungen dagegen werden nur von 10% aller Lehrer als Teil der […]

  3. BBC NEWS | The Editors says

    […] Greenslade has picked up on a recent report highlighted by Andrew Grant-Adamson about internet use in US schools. The report by the Carnegie-Knight Task Force on the Future of […]

  4. Neil Mc says

    Andrew – your post is correctly worded (as is the report). It’s your headline I was pointing at, because it is incorrect, and not supported by text or report. Sorry – used to be a sub…

  5. Andrew Grant-Adamson says

    Neil, I did wonder about the Guardian when I was writing this as I know you are widely used as an educational resource around the world. My dictionary says “such as” means “for example” so I believe the actual text supports the headline. But I would not be surprised if there turns out to be loose wording in the report.One of the great things about blogging is the way in which challenges can clarify things.

  6. Neil Mc says

    Is it true to say “US schools make more use of BBC than of local media”? Reading the report, it seems US schools make more use of *non US news organisations* – *such* as the BBC – than local newspapers. So what you’re doing with the headline is bundling together all non US news organisations together as one, and saying they’re the BBC. While the BBC does a very good job, I’d take issue with your claim, for obvious reasons 🙂

  7. Proof of the BBC's online success in the States from Greenslade says

    […] grateful to Andrew Grant-Adamson for pointing to a fascinating report about the success of the BBC’s news website in the States. […]

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