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Teaching Guide: Exploring the Impact of Television on News Media

This teaching guide helps instructors use a specific primary source set, The Impact of Television on News Media, in the classroom. It offers discussion questions, classroom activities, and primary source analysis tools. It is intended to spark pedagogical creativity by giving a sample approach to the material. Please feel free to share, reuse, and adapt the resources in this guide for your teaching purposes.

Discussion questions

  1. Using the items in this set, compare and contrast different types of media and their impact on domestic politics in the twentieth century.

  2. Using the items in this set, describe the impact television had on journalism in the twentieth century.

  3. Using the items in this set, describe how television has influenced the democratic process.

  4. As with the initial introduction of television, twenty-four hour news coverage dramatically influenced American’s consumption of world events. Describe the impact CNN’s launch had on news media.

  5. Using the items in this set, consider whether the Vietnam War would have been so radically opposed if it was only reported via radio.

  6. Imagine a world without the innovation of television and the Internet. Would our consumption of news media have remained the same with only radio and print as delivery mechanisms?

Classroom activities

Using the items in this set as evidence, write a persuasive essay arguing one side of the proposition: television news has been good for American democracy.

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