Researching a Controversy
This is an activity to get students to think critically about the sources and information presented in a Wikipedia article. Students are asked to look up an article on their own topic, or a topic related to the course, and examine the content and the “Talk” page to see what issues the article has related to Wikipedia’s 3 guiding principles for content: point of view (objectivity/bias), verifiability (quality of sources cited), and evidence of original research. NOTE: This activity works best for topics (people, events) that are current public debates and/or controversial.
Students will define Wikipedia’s guiding content principles
Students will evaluate a topic by investigating Wikipedia talk pages related to it
Information Literacy concepts:
Individual or Group:
Course Context (e.g. how it was implemented or integrated):
Additional Instructor Resources (e.g. in-class activities, worksheets, scaffolding applications, supplemental modules, further readings, etc.):
Potential Pitfalls and Teaching Tips:
Suggested Citation:RIS Team, Duke University Libraries. "Researching a Controversy." CORA (Community of Online Research Assignments), 2019. https://projectcora.org/assignment/researching-controversy.
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