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In North America, the beginnings of a formalized approach to media literacy as a topic of education is often attributed to the 1978 formation of the Ontario-based Association for Media Literacy ( AML ).
Before that time, instruction in media education was usually the purview of individual teachers and practitioners.
Canada was the first country in North America to require media literacy in the school curriculum.
Every province has mandated media education in its curriculum.
For example, the new curriculum of Quebec mandates media literacy from Grade 1 until final year of secondary school ( Secondary V ).
The launching of media education in Canada came about for two reasons.
One reason was the concern about the pervasiveness of American popular culture and the other was the education system-driven necessity of contexts for new educational paradigms.
Canadian communication scholar Marshall McLuhan ignited the North American educational movement for media literacy in the 1950s and 1960s.
Two of Canada's leaders in Media Literacy and Media Education are Barry Duncan and John Pungente.
Duncan passed away on June 6, 2012, even after retired from classroom teaching but was still active in media education.
Pungente is a Jesuit priest who has promoted media literacy since the early 1960s.

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