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A Case Study on the Visual Literacy of the College Students : Utilizing Television Programs


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  • 大学生の「テレビの見方」についての一考察


1) There is no concrete data on the "visual literacy" of Japanese college students, i. e., what extent they can understand, appreciate, or critically view television programs. This case study is a report on a classroom-size survey on visual literacy; the main research theme concerns the evaluation of a production method utilized in a particular television program. The production method in question involves adequacy of inserting "prerecorded" sequences into "real-time" programs. 2) The program used in the survey was titled "Yukutoshi, Kurutoshi (new year's Eve Now)" and was telecasted on December 31st, 1987. It was a relay program reporting various New Year's Eve events from all over Japan. The material in question was the "Minobu-san Kuon-ji Temple" sequence, which several priests went through a ritual of self purification by pouring cold water over themselves. This sequence was criticized by the Asahi Shimbun Newspaper on January 3rd, 1988, because it is not "fair" to insert "prerecorded" materials into sequences which viewers assume happen in" real time. 3) 133 college students were asked the following question after they viewed the program. "The self purification sequence in the Minobu-san Kuon-ji Temple was recorded in advance. What do you think about this kind of program production method? Please check one of the following choices." 1. Absolutely not permissible. 2. To some extent not permissible. 3. Can not say "yes" or"no". 4. To some extent permissible. 5. Absolutely permissible. 4) The results were as follows: 1+2 Not permissible = approx. 40% 4+5 permissible = approx. 43% 5) Conclusion: There was a great discrepancy between the two groups of the students concerning the critical view on the production methods of "Yukutoshi, Kurutoshi." This means that the students have thier own standards and opinions which greatly differ on production methads of television program. We generally expect that critical standards will differ according to age, but there existed equally different views even in the same generation. This suggests that "visual literacy" question is not so simple as one may predetermine.



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