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Journalism focuses on writing for a broad audience across many different media platforms.

Basic FYI & Fact-Checking

Begin your process here, using reference resources like the ones below, to gather basic information and specific keywords that will help your search. The techniques we'll discuss can be used in any database - including Google - but you'll want to keep in mind that we need reliable, authoritative sources for our research. 

Take a few minutes to review the SIFT process to familiarize yourself with easy ways to fact-check your sources.

  • Want to understand why fact-checking is so important?  Read this article on misinformation for some food for thought.
  • Ready to start?  Check out Web Literacy for Student Fact-Checkers, from digital-literacy guru Mike Caulfield.
  • Interested in digging deeper?  Check out the Debunking Handbook, which explains why we so often believe misinformation.
  • Lastly, check out this book, Be Credible, from the KU J School for tips on credibility and specifics on FOIA and Public Records.  
  • You'll thank us later.

Quick Tips on How To Search ...

We're all familiar with searching in Google, but searching in academic databases is a little different and you will have more options available to you.

  • Google can take a search and match similar terms or use natural language to broaden your search.
  • Databases can only search on the terms available within the content, so think of searching in academic sources as trying to get inside the author's head - what terms would they use?

A basic knowledge of Boolean terms (And, Not, Or) as well as and understanding of the difference between scholarly and popular sources is helpful when you're starting your research.  Take a few minutes to check out these short videos that explain both these concepts in more depth: 

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