Information Literacy for 7-12 Science teachers and students
How to use this packet…
The following slides, videos, and exercises are
designed to help your students become critical
thinkers and savvy users of online resources.
They can be used individually or as part of a
larger unit and can be modified depending on
In groups of 3-4 discuss and respond to the
-What do you think is meant by “information
-Is all information that you find online valid?
Why or why not?
-How could you tell if an online source is
-What is bias and how does it effect finding
Have students write down their key points
and prepare for a large group discussion
The Filter Bubble
Click on me!
The “Filter Bubble” Activity
Learning objectives: gather information, evaluate sources, describe the effect of the filter
bubble, develop a strategy to address the filter bubble when doing Internet research.
Students are given a controversial topic and are asked to do a “Google” search from their
home computer and/or mobile device. All students are provided with the exact term to be
searched (i.e. gene therapy). Results are recorded in the form below:
List the first
five (5) nonsponsored links
Do you notice
any evidence of
bias in your
an example, if
Are all of these
sites useful for
Why or why
After comparing information with other students in the class, or with groups of four or
five students, ask if there are any questions. If all searches in a group were identical, have
the students in that group compare with other groups.
Think Outside the “Like” Button
Assignment #2: Have students read and react to two articles of your choice
from the column, “Bad Science”.
Do you think that there is such a thing as search overload? Why or why not?
What are some strategies for finding the most relevant sources? Discuss in
How do I know if a source is credible?
Who is the author?
How recent is the source?
What is the author's purpose
What type of sources does your audience value?
Be especially careful when evaluating Internet
Never use Web sites where an author cannot be determined, unless the
site is associated with a reputable institution such as a respected
university, a credible media outlet, government program or department, or
well-known non-governmental organizations
Chose two scientific
topics that are of
interest to you and
search for them using
Wikipedia. Find three
references that you
believe are from
credible sources and
Skip Google and Go Straight to Credible Sources!
Using Databases to find the answer!
Chose two resources from the website
Search for the same topic of your
choice. Compare and contrast your
See what your school
library has to offer!
Subscription databases provide access
to scientific publications, newspaper
articles, and much more that is often
not freely available online. Many
school and public libraries have access
to these databases so take advantage
of their services!
Search Strategies and Keywords: Making your search better!
Pick one word, the keyword, to
describe what you are looking for.
In-Class Boolean Exercise
Materials: A standard deck of 52 playing cards
1. Hand each student one card from the deck.
2. Ask those students with face cards to raise their hands (or stand up).
3. Ask those with cards that are both face cards AND red cards to raise their hands.
4. Point out that there are fewer cards now than there were before...because of the
Boolean operator AND.
5. Ask those students with "number" cards to raise their hands.
6. Ask those with "number" cards OR black cards to raise their hands.
7. Point out that there are more cards now than there were in the previous "hand"
because of the Boolean operator OR.
-Similar examples can be used to show the NOT operator if desired (a Jack that is NOT a
Tying It All Together
We have covered a lot of
information and hopefully
have a better understanding
of information literacy and
how to find credible sources
for scientific information.
Using our new found
knowledge, write a 2 page
research paper on a scientific
topic of your choice. You
must use at least 5 credible
sources and include a
description of where and how
you found your sources.
For more information contact Amelia Vaughan