Day 5: Recognizing misinformation

Misinformation lesson cover image

Separate fake from fact

In the final Checkology lesson we're sharing for National News Literacy Week, you'll learn to identify five different types of misinformation and the ways that misinformation can damage democracy. NOTE: Use a computer or tablet to access these lessons; they are not designed for phones.

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Additional resources

Further reading

Student using Check Center on iPad

Go deeper with our Check Center

For today only, we're opening up Checkology's Check Center so our Basic users can try it. There, you'll learn skills and find tips and tools that you can use to debunk information. Once you've learned the tools, you can debunk your own piece of misinformation — or try one of our Missions. For this you'll need to log in to Checkology, then go to

Educator Extra:

Blending tips and strategies 

This lesson can be paired with an in-depth look at research and fact-checking tools. As students are evaluating information and misinformation, reinforce the different types of tools that can be used with specific types of misinformation.

Have students bring in examples of misinformation that show up on their social media feeds, and have them try to determine the history of the content and the origin of the post.

In a course with a civics curriculum, consider evaluating the claims of candidates, political action committees and political parties to see if any are using misinformation in their campaigns.

Within a science curriculum, consider having students apply fact-checking and misinformation-debunking skills and tools on different types of pseudo-science.

Prompts for discussion

  • How much does intent matter when evaluating misinformation? Can intent really be accurately determined?
  • Can misinformation be ethical if used for advocacy?
  • Should people who unknowingly share misinformation be criticized as strongly as those who created it?
  • What are the challenges in determining the consequences of different types of misinformation?

Want more?

Test your news literacy know-how with our free app, Informable. Score points for accuracy and speed across four modes, each with three levels of difficulty.