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Evaluation Checklist

Bias

Is an organization mentioned in relation to an article? Think tanks, associations, and other organizations usually exist for a reason. Learn more about the organization to identify potential biases by:
 

  • Going to the organization's website and looking for information about their Mission

  • Searching for news articles about the organizations that indicate their political leaning.
     

Are all biases bad? NO. But being aware of them helps contextualize the information presented.

Fact Checking

Curious about the facts presented? Are the numbers accurate? Was someone quoted correctly? There are a few things you can do:
 

  • Look for the source of facts yourself. A good author will give you some indication of where they found the information. For example, if an article references a recent Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report, go to the CBO's site to locate the report.
     

  • LexisNexis Academic has a section under News for TV & Radio Transcripts. You may be able to find the transcript of an interview, or the text of a public statement here.
     

  • Politifact focuses on political statements. Researchers at the Tampa Bay Time fact check speeches, ads, and more. Politifact references their sources, making it relatively easy for readers to retrace their steps. 
     

  • FactCheck.org also focuses on political statements, this project from the Annenberg Public Policy center fact checks speeches, ads, and more. FactCheck.org references their sources, making it relatively easy for readers to retrace their steps.

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