By the Fancy Comma, LLC Team
As scientists, we’ve learned critical thinking skills which allow us to rapidly fact-check knowledge, compare them to accepted scientific methods and conventions, and critically analyze new information. The pandemic has illustrated that these skills, while essential for scientists, are not widely held in the general population. This makes reading news stories, especially those containing scientific information, difficult. Not only are most people not trained in science methods such as hypothesis testing, critical analysis, and so on, most journalists do not have this training, either. This can slow down the distribution of accurate scientific information and make dispelling misinformation difficult.
In Part 1, we discuss various types of misinformation and fake news, and their tendency to spread faster than the facts.
Next, in Part 2, we discuss science literacy as a form of news literacy. We delve into the different aspects that one must consider when reading science information from the news. These concepts can be applied not just to science news literacy, but news literacy in general.
Finally, in Part 3, we offer helpful tips on ways to look for fake news.
The above videos help answer questions such as:
- How can I tell if I am reading a legitimate source of scientific information?
- Does the news story I am reading contain hidden biases or agendas?
- Are there ways to verify the information I am reading?
- Is this viral story or news item really true?
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