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Visual Literacy

This guide defines visual literacy, explains what visual literacy skills are, and lists resources related to this topic.

Using Images and Visual Media Efficiently

Considerations to Make When Using Images/Visual Media:

Image choice and use can be a somewhat subjective process. However, there are some general considerations you can make when choosing an image for research and/or publication purposes. 

  • What setting are you using the image in?
    • Considering the setting or environment of your image use can help you decide if you are using the right image or if you need an image at all. 
  • Who is the audience for your image use?
    • This question is related to the first bullet point and it is just as important. You want to make sure that you are using that is appropriate for your audience. Will your audience understand the message of the image? Should you provide specific background information in the image caption? All of these questions are important to think about when considering your future audience.
  • Is your image use necessary?
    • What I mean by this question is, does your image use convey its own message that is not already explained in words? You don't want to use an image just to fill space or repeat something you have already said with text. Make sure that your image use is purposeful and planned. 

Tips for Using Images/Visual Media:

  • Make sure that you have permission to use the image
  • Don't use an image unless you need it (Look at the considerations listed above)
  • Use your own images or look for open access images