Best Practice: NewsU

Building news savvy: Best practices

▸Education

Learning To Check Facts

WHAT IS IT?

Fact-Checking: How to Improve Your Skills in Accountability Journalism is a self-directed online course on fact-checking for journalists and nonjournalists that covers why fact-checking is important, what to check, the process of fact-checking, common mistakes and how to avoid them. The course also includes tips on establishing and finding funding for fact-checking operations.



WHO’S BEHIND IT?

Poynter’s News University partnered with the American Press Institute to create the course. Poynter is the hub of the International Fact-Checking network. API conducts research on audience metrics, innovation and business models for journalism, including the 2016 study, “A new understanding: What makes people trust and rely on news.”

DOES IT WORK?

Nearly 2,700 people have enrolled in the NewsU course, for good reason. Research by the Trust Project shows that people value truthful, verified news. A 2015 survey of 10,000 journalism and communications school graduates found that two-thirds considered fact-checking “very” or “somewhat” effective. Important: Video seems to work better. See a TruthBuzz winner from Italy here.



HOW TO DO IT

Register at NewsU in order to enroll in the free class, which takes two to four hours to complete. News U also offers a Spanish-language version. The course is also part of a suite of online fact-checking courses that cost $99 and offer a fact-checking certificate on completion.


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