NewsWise is a news literacy program to provide school-aged Canadians an understanding of the role of journalism in a healthy democracy and the tools to find and filter information online

What is NewsWise?

Launched in 2018, NewsWise is a news literacy program for students in Grades 5 to 12. Its mission is to help students cultivate habits of news consumption and critical-thinking that support informed citizenship.

Lessons are designed to help students to recognize the standards of fact-based journalism, understand the difference between opinion and fact, develop an appreciation for journalism and traditional media, and identify whether a claim or source is credible.


Why now?

More than ever, people are getting their news from online sources and social media. Access to unprecedented amounts of information means citizens must continually sort and assess what we see.

The spread of ‘fake news’ has caused a widespread reckoning over how vulnerable our information systems are, and how our online environment has become polluted with false and low-quality information.

News literacy skills are fundamental, and living in a time of unparalleled information complexity, they are more important than ever.


What’s next?

NewsWise is currently being piloted with Ontario teachers, participating in Student Vote Ontario 2018. The program will remain available year-round to all teachers. We will continue to refine and develop NewsWise materials, with a full rollout planned for the 2019 federal election. For more information, please email [email protected].

NewsWise is the product of a partnership between CIVIX and the Canadian Journalism Foundation, with the support of the Google.org Charitable Giving Fund of Tides Foundation.

Card image cap

CIVIX is a non-partisan, national registered charity dedicated to building the habits of active and engaged citizenship among young Canadians.

Its flagship program, Student Vote, a parallel election for students under the voting age coinciding with general elections. The program provides students with an opportunity to learn about government and democracy, and research and assess the issues, party platforms and candidates. In the culminating activity, students cast ballots on the official local candidates in the election.

Card image cap

Since 1990, The Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF) has been working to preserve, provoke, and enhance excellence in journalism.

The CJF has been dedicated to acting as a catalyst for open and honest dialogue – helping to improve relationships between and understanding of the media and the private and public organizations that are often the focus of media and public attention. It is a pivotal distinction that sets The Canadian Journalism Foundation apart.