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Lateral reading is the antidote to fake news

In the last few years, the term “fake news” has been used to describe many types of modern media. For children and adults alike, it is growing increasingly difficult to know where to go to find reliable information free of bias. Worse yet, some of the most important issues of our time, like implementations of government policy and national elections, are some of the most common targets of mis- and dis- information.

Just look at this this chart from Google Trends on the search term “fake news.”

The antidote to misinformation and disinformation is a process known as “lateral reading,” a type of meta research where interested parties gather additional evidence about a source. Have you ever asked yourself, “Who is funding this research I am reading? What are the qualifications of the authors?” Those are the types of questions lateral reading attempts to answer.

I had to design a webquest activity for students that taught lateral reading as part of my coursework for my master’s degree. A descriptive presentation is below:

See more evidence of ISTE-C standards here: