Evaluating Sources of Information
Whether you are reading the news or working on a research project, you should use a critical eye. Evaluating sources helps you judge whether information is reliable and trustworthy or faulty and misleading. In today's volatile media environment, those distinctions often blur, making it more difficult to discern credible sources from deceptive ones.
But fear not. You can apply the evaluation checklist at the bottom of the activity to test the reliability of any source. The more questions you can answer with "yes," the more likely it is you're working with a trustworthy source.
Your Turn Imagine you've been assigned to write a research report about the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), an immigration policy that provided a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who arrived in America illegally as children. You've gathered four sources on the topic and need to determine if the information in them is reliable enough to cite in your report. Apply the evaluation checklist questions to each source. Then, in a short paragraph, argue for or against each source being used in the research report.
- Source 1: We Are Americans, Revisited (Time Magazine)
- Source 2: What It's Like to See Your Photograph Transformed Into a Racist Online Hoax (Poynter)
- Source 3: A few fun facts about Dreamers (social media meme; author unknown)
- Source 4: From Undocumented to DACAmented: Impacts of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (Institute for Research on Labor and Employment)
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Based on a work at k12.thoughtfullearning.com/minilesson/evaluating-sources-information.