Investigating the Relationship between Media Literacy and Health Literacy in Iranian Adolescents, Isfahan, Iran

Authors

1 MSc, Student Research Center, Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.

2 PhD of Communication Sciences, Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman, Kerman, Iran.

3 Assistant Professor, Nursing and Midwifery Care Research Center, Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.

4 Associated Professor, Nursing and Midwifery Care Research Center, Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.

Abstract

Background: Today, most of the information related to the health system is provided by the mass media. Learning about health issues requires understanding and recognizing their influence on health behavior and critical analysis of media content by the target audience, especially the most frequent and the most vulnerable one, adolescents. We aimed to determine the relationship between media literacy and health literacy in adolescents.
Materials and Methods: In this descriptive-analytical study, 217 students in the first year of high school, eligible for inclusion in the study, were randomly selected from six districts of education in Isfahan and completed the media literacy and the health literacy Measure for Adolescents questionnaires. Data were analyzed using SPSS software version 16.0.
Results: The mean score of media literacy and health literacy in adolescents was 70.26 ± 9.88 (total score= 100) and 152.20 ± 25.78 (total score= 205), respectively. Among the dimensions of media literacy, the two dimensions of media message content perception (15.07 out of 20), and conscious choice of media messages (15.08 out of 20) had the highest mean score and the dimension of media message analysis (12.44 out of 20) had the lowest one. The multiple linear regression model showed that among the media literacy dimensions, the best predictors for health literacy scores were the two dimensions of media message content perception and awareness of the hidden purposes of media messages.
Conclusion
The results of the present study showed that there was a direct correlation between the media literacy with the health literacy and all of its dimensions except for the critical look at media messages.

Keywords