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This report provides the first comprehensive analysis into how Australians understand and use different forms of traditional and digital media.

The report involves a collaboration between researchers at the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University, the Digital Media Research Centre at Queensland University of Technology, and the News and Media Research Centre at the University of Canberra.

In November and December 2020, the research team surveyed a sample of 3,510 adult Australians to understand the different types of media they use, the value they place on different media activities, their confidence in their own media abilities and their access to media literacy support.

The findings show that most Australians use several different types of media each day, they believe a diverse range of media activities are important in their lives, but their confidence in their own media abilities is unexpectedly low. The findings also show that far too many Australians don’t have access to any media literacy support when they need it.

The report co-authors argue that given how integral media is to all aspects of our lives, far more needs to be done to address the needs of groups who are the least confident about their media abilities and who have access to the least support. The findings also show that increasing media literacy can yield direct benefits for increasing people’s civic engagement.

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