Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Philosophy (Ph.D)


Education Specialties

First Advisor

Olivia Stewart

Second Advisor

Donna Egan


As the need for critical media literacy practices in classrooms increases, it is important to investigate students’ experiences with a variety of media texts, specifically when analyzed from a critical media literacy stance. Critical media literacy creates spaces for students to question, challenge, and analyze the role of media texts in promoting or rejecting dominant ideologies and narratives. This qualitative action research study, framed in both critical literacy and critical media literacy practices, studied the experiences of students who engaged with podcasts as a supplementary course text. The study took place over the course of ten weeks with secondary level students (n=8) enrolled in an Intro to Social Justice Course. Students selected podcasts to support unit topics and analyzed each podcast episode using a critical media literacy framework. Additional data was collected from student questionnaires, student interviews, digital recordings, and student artifacts. Recursive, ongoing data analysis took place throughout the action-research cycle including first cycle In Vivo coding and second cycle pattern coding resulting in six themes that generated three findings: 1) students at the secondary level embraced podcasts as a classroom text, 2) podcasts provided students access to diverse perspectives and discourses, and 3) the consistent use of critical media literacy practices encouraged students to question and deconstruct media texts within and beyond the classroom walls. This study offers an examination of how students responded to podcasts as a classroom text as well as the impact of critical media literacy practices on student engagement, analysis, and instructional practices.

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