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Learn how to validate online content - Is it true or fake news?

Article by Richard Byrne

In this age of fake and misleading news being spread through social media, it is more important than ever to teach students how to view websites with a critical eye. Here are three good resources that can help you help your students learn to evaluate the credibility of a website.

RADCAB is a good framework for evaluating websites. RADCAB stands for stands for relevancy, appropriateness, detail, currency, authority, and bias. The RADCAB website offers short explanations of each of the aspects of evaluation and why they are significant. The site also provides a rubric (link opens PDF) that you can download and print for your students to use to score the credibility of a website.

Common Craft offers a good video about website evaluation strategies. Website Evaluation Explained by Common Craft teaches viewers to think like an editor when reviewing the claims made in articles on websites. And part of being a good editor is being able to verify the sources of support for a claim. That strategy and more is explained in Website Evaluation Explained by Common Craft.

After getting familiar with RADCAB and reviewing the Common Craft video, students can test their evaluation skills by play Factitious. Factitiousis a fun game for testing your skill at identifying fake and misleading news stories. To play Factitious simply go to the site and select quick start. You'll then see an article appear on the screen. Read through the article, click the source listed at the bottom, and then select either the green check mark or red X to indicate whether or not you think the article is a real news story. After you make your selection you'll get instant feedback and an explanation of how you can tell if the article was a real or fake news story.

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