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About this module

The aim of the module is to understand the methodologies for identifying “fake news” and distinguish them from fact-checked articles.

The first chapter explores the response of social media to the spread of fake news by presenting examples of measures the companies are using.

The next chapter presents various fake news detection models used by professional fact-checkers through experiments and examples. The complex detection models combine technology with human skills in order to identify “fake news”. Students will be able to understand the complexity behind professional fact-checking and its parameters. The next step is to present a simple step-by-step guide for identifying “fake news” that the students could use in practice. This guide will encourage critical thinking and discussion. Lastly, the next steps of “fake news” will be presented in order to raise awareness about the future of fake news: deepfakes.

The module can be adapted easily by leaving out parts of chapters and/or activities. Also, there is the possibility to divide the module in sections, although not recommended as the inputs and activities build upon each other.

After finishing this module, students of teacher education will be able to

  • distinguish between fake and fact-checked articles based on the 5g technology topic;
  • identify controversial topics and different points of view including their central arguments;
  • demonstrate familiarity with different scientific methods for the analysis of media articles;
  • accurately describe their observations about the “fake news” articles;
  • obtain analytical and critical thinking skills as well as research strategies, argumentation, co-operation and conflict-resolution skills and techniques;
  • develop their critical thinking in relation to the information of the articles;
  • understand the mechanisms of identification.

After finishing this module, students of teacher education will be able to:

  • critically assess the credibility and reliability of sources of data, information and digital content (DigiComp p. 24);
  • explain how to access them and navigate between them (DigiComp p. 23);
  • adapt the most appropriate communication means for a given context (DigiComp p. 26);
  • apply a variety of referencing and attribution practices (DigiComp p. 27);
  • apply different strategies for different discussion situations (On/Offline, Social Media…) (DigiComp p. 30);
  • explain well-defined and routine personal search strategies (DigiComp p. 23)
  • reflect critically on the nature and purposes of democratic political processes (CDC p. 50);
  • reflect critically on his/her own prejudices and stereotypes/on his/her own perspective(s) on the world and what lies behind them as well as on his/her own emotions and feelings in a wide range of situations (CDC p. 22);
  • reflect critically on the different communicative conventions that are employed in at least one other social group or culture (CDC p. 22);
  • express willingness to tolerate uncertainty / be comfortable when dealing with ambiguous situations (CDC p. 31).
  • Ability and openness in critical thinking and discussion
  • Any experience and knowledge of the principles of fake news is an advantage
  • Prior knowledge of the lecturers/teachers: For some parts of the module some of prior knowledge of the lecturers might be needed. Therefore literature and links/resources that can be consulted in order to be prepared as a teacher can be found in the “self study material” in the table, accompanying each lesson as well as in the detailed description of the module.