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Metaliteracy is the ability to evaluate information for its bias, reliability, and credibility. It is especially useful in the context of the internet and social media.[1] A formal concept of it was developed as an expanded information literacy framework by SUNY academics Thomas P. Mackey and Trudi E. Jacobson.

"Metaliteracy promotes critical thinking and collaboration in a digital age, providing a comprehensive framework to effectively participate in social media and online communities. It is a unified construct that supports the acquisition, production, and sharing of knowledge in collaborative online communities. Metaliteracy challenges traditional skills-based approaches to information literacy by recognizing related literacy types and incorporating emerging technologies. Standard definitions of information literacy are insufficient for the revolutionary social technologies currently prevalent online." - Reframing Information Literacy as a Metaliteracy.[2][3]


Metaliteracy developed out of scholarly work on the changing perceptions of information literacy resulting from technological changes in the creation of and access to information. Mackey and Jacobson argued in their 2011 paper Reframing Information Literacy as a Metaliteracy[4] that it was necessary to create a new framework to include Web 2.0 technologies and Social Media as these developments were not included in previous Information Literacy models created by the ALA in 1989[5], ACLR in 2000[6] and various SCONUL models[7] .Donna Witek and Teresa Grettano further elaborated on the idea of Metaliteracy in the award winning paper[8] Teaching metaliteracy: a new paradigm in action[9]. Leona M. Ungerer discussed the importance of Digital Curation and Metaliteracy in higher education in her 2016 paper Digital Curation as a Core Competency in Current Learning and Literacy: A Higher Education Perspective.[10]

On January 11, 2016, the board of the Association of College and Research Libraries adopted the Framework for Information Literacy, which "draws significantly on the concept of metaliteracy", and depends on "core ideas of metaliteracy".[11] The adoption of this framework brought widespread attention to metaliteracy concepts, as librarians in higher education attempted to incorporate these ideas into their information literacy courses and instruction sessions. As awareness of metaliteracy has spread, teachers have integrated it into a variety of contexts, including teaching English as a Foreign Language[12] and adapting information literacy assessment strategies to reflect metaliteracy's emphasis on metacognition.[13] The potential of metaliteracy concepts to enrich blended learning environments has been investigated by Ma, Li, and Liang.[14]


Metaliteracy was cited as being an effective tool to fight fake news, especially in the context of the 2016 United States presidential election.[15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Mackey, Thomas P.; Jacobson, Trudi E. "Reframing Information Literacy as a Metaliteracy | Mackey | College & Research Libraries". doi:10.5860/crl-76r1. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  2. ^ Mackey, Thomas P.; Jacobson, Trudi E. (2014). Metaliteracy: Reinventing Information Literacy to Empower Learners. ALA Neal-Schuman. ISBN 9781555709891.
  3. ^ Jacobson, Trudi E.; Mackey, Thomas P. (2015). Metaliteracy in Practice. Neal-Schuman Publishers. ISBN 9780838913796.
  4. ^ Mackey, Thomas P.; Jacobson, Trudi E. "Reframing Information Literacy as a Metaliteracy | Mackey | College & Research Libraries". doi:10.5860/crl-76r1. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  5. ^ "Presidential Committee on Information Literacy: Final Report".
  6. ^ "Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education". January 2000.
  7. ^ "Seven Pillars of Information Literacy".
  8. ^ "Outstanding Paper Award for Dr. Grettano and Prof. Witek – Department of English and Theatre Blog". sites.scranton.edu.
  9. ^ Witek, Donna; Grettano, Teresa (2014). "Teaching metaliteracy: a new paradigm in action". Reference Services Review. 42 (2): 188–208. doi:10.1108/rsr-07-2013-0035.
  10. ^ Ungerer, Leona M. (26 September 2016). "Digital Curation as a Core Competency in Current Learning and Literacy: A Higher Education Perspective". The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning. 17 (5). ISSN 1492-3831.
  11. ^ Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) (2015-02-09). "Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education". Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL). Retrieved 2019-11-21.
  12. ^ Schuster, Kristen; Stewart, Kristine (2019-09-24). "Integrating metaliteracy into knowledge organization curriculum: Designing inclusive curriculum for international classrooms". Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  13. ^ Hostetler, Kristen; Luo, Tian; Stefaniak, Jill E. (2018). "Aligning Information Literacy Assessment with Metacognitive Strategies" (PDF). Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice. 15 (5).
  14. ^ Ma, Jieming; Li, Chili; Liang, Hai-Ning (2019-04-28). "Enhancing Students' Blended Learning Experience through Embedding Metaliteracy". Education Research International. 2019: 1–8. doi:10.1155/2019/6791058. ISSN 2090-4002.
  15. ^ Mackey, Thomas P.; Jacobson, Trudi. "How can we learn to reject fake news in the digital world?". The Conversation. Retrieved 2019-11-10.

External links[edit]