Assignment: Baloney Detection Kit

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Have student watch the following:

  1. How reliable is the source of the claim?
  2. Does teh wources make similar claims?
  3. Has the claims been verified by somebody else?
  4. Does this fit with the way the world works?
  5. Has anyone tried to disprove the claim?
  6. Where does the preponderance of evidence point?
  7. Is the claimant playing by the rules of science?
  8. Is the claimant providing positive evidence?
  9. Does the new theory account for as many phenomena as the old theory?
  10. Are personal beliefs driving the claim?

Then have students create a class Baloney Detection Kit--basically criteria for evaluating information and evidence they use in the class. Post this in the class site and ask students to find two sources (one credible, one not so credible or one website and one newspaper, or one .org and .gov) and apply the detection kit.

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