Teaching in an Era of Fake News: How to Decipher Evidence-Based Facts from Fiction

Session Description
Fake News was chosen as the Collins Dictionary publisher’s Word of the Year for 2017. Their choice of fake news﹘false, often sensational, information﹘underscores the growing challenge faced by educators in ensuring students have the skills needed to distinguish reliable, credible, evidence-based facts from false or inaccurate information (misinformation).

The explosion of false information online in numerous fields﹘health, nutrition, medical, fitness and political﹘makes it critical for viewers to quickly evaluate a website in a few seconds for reliability. The rise of social media influencers are blurring the lines in many areas, including nutrition and medicine, where peers are viewed as credible as experts. A quick screening checklist can assist the viewer critically analyze information and determine if it is true or false news, to follow nutrition or medical advice, to make an online purchase, or to use it as a fact-based resource in a class assignment.

The presenter incorporates critical thinking and Internet sleuthing skills into assignments that teach online nutrition students how to become savvier Internet healthcare consumers. Over several different assignments college, nutrition students practice evaluating online articles and finding reliable, evidence-based information using QUICK reviews and checklists.

During this general session participants will learn about a QUICK review that can be rapidly used to check websites for reliability and two checklists that can be applied to more thoroughly evaluate online websites and resources. Participants will be invited to share their own experiences teaching in this era of fake news and ideas for discerning fact from fiction.

Kirsti Dyer
Kirsti Dyer, Columbia College, Sonora, California, USA
Dr. Kirsti A. Dyer MD, MS, FT is a physician, health educator, professor, online instructor, lecturer and author. Dr. Dyer received her medical and master’s degrees from the University of California, Davis. After having her two daughters, her professional focus shifted from clinical practice to education, integrative medicine, and health promotion.

Dr. Dyer has been teaching Nutrition for Columbia College since January 2005 in the Biological Sciences Department. Her course has been fully online since Fall 2008 first in Blackboard and since Spring 2017 in Canvas. She is in her third year of leading Walking Classes with the Columbia College Community Education Program.

She has been an Associate Adjunct Professor in the Hospice and Palliative Studies Department at Madonna University since 2006. Dr. Dyer has taught an online graduate course in Grieving Family Systems; Trauma, Loss and Grief; Integrative Treatment Modalities in Trauma Loss and the Hospice/End-of-Life section of Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Gerontology Grief. She has also taught several undergraduate courses as part of Essentials in End of Life Care and Hospice and Palliative Studies Certificates.

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One Response to Teaching in an Era of Fake News: How to Decipher Evidence-Based Facts from Fiction

  1. Kirsti Dyer April 18, 2018 at 11:25 am #

    Thanks for everyone who attended the whirlwind presentation on “Teaching in an Era of Fake News”

    I can send a handout of the slides, for those interested, if they don’t get posted here.

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