Stanford education researchers create free lessons to teach digital literacy

Sam Wineburg

In a digital age, being an informed citizen draws on the ability to locate trustworthy information and determine its reliability. Stanford research led by SAM WINEBURG, the Margaret Jacks Professor of Education, has shown that many young people have difficulty distinguishing between dubious and credible sources online.

To help students become smarter consumers of digital information, a team at the Stanford History Education Group collaborated with the Poynter Institute and the Local Media Association to create MediaWise, an initiative supported by Google.org. Researchers worked alongside classroom teachers to produce curriculum for teaching an approach they call “civic online reasoning” (COR) – the ability to search for, evaluate and verify social and political information.

The COR curriculum is now available for free at cor.stanford.edu. The suite of lessons can be implemented as a full curriculum or taught as a series of stand-alone lessons. The materials are accompanied by instructional videos introducing the approach, easy-to-use assessments for tracking students’ progress and a 10-episode video series, Navigating Digital Information.

Watch a video to learn more, and visit the COR website to download the classroom-ready curriculum.