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Encouraging Critical
  Thinking Online

        Unit 1
  Checking Facts and
  Gathering Opinions
What was William Shakespeare’s
        date of birth?
• Find three websites that provide an
  answer
• Fill in the boxes o...
What was William Shakespeare’s
        date of birth?
• Some sources say 23 April 1564:
  – The Shakespeare Country websit...
Shakespeare Country website




http://www.shakespeare-country.com/william_shakespeare.htm   Retrieved 20 June 2008
Shakespeare Country website




http://www.shakespeare-country.com/william_shakespeare.htm   Retrieved 20 June 2008
What was William Shakespeare’s
        date of birth?
• In fact, we don’t really know the precise
  date
  – He was baptis...
What was William Shakespeare’s
        date of birth?
• However, some scholars give
 reasons to doubt this
  – Shakespeare...
Shakespeare Online biography page




http://www.shakespeare-online.com/biography/   Retrieved 20 June 2008
Summary - key things to note

• The straightforward answer to a
  question is not always the most
  precise
• As informati...
Why might we find conflicting
    answers to a question?
• There may be real uncertainty
  about the answer
• Authorities ...
Why might we find conflicting
    answers to a question?
• Some sources may be more up to
  date than others
• Answers may...
Questions to ask when
        assessing sources
• Who is the author?
  – An individual or an institution?
  – What are the...
Questions to ask when
        assessing sources
• Are there reasons to doubt the
 reliability of this source?
  – Does it ...
Questions to ask when
        assessing sources
• Is the information provided
 confirmed by other sources?
  – Are referen...
Remember the three Ws

• WHO wrote this site?
  – Is the author a trustworthy source?
• WHEN was it written?
  – Is it up ...
This slideshow is part of
Encouraging Critical Thinking Online,
   a set of free teaching resources
         designed to d...
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Critical Thinking Unit 1 Question A1 Shakespeare Slide Share

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Part of a set of university teaching materials called "Encouraging Critical Thinking Online" by Meriel Patrick of Oxford University, made openly available for adaptation and re-use in the Intute Virtual Training Suite <http: />

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Transcript of "Critical Thinking Unit 1 Question A1 Shakespeare Slide Share"

  1. 1. Encouraging Critical Thinking Online Unit 1 Checking Facts and Gathering Opinions
  2. 2. What was William Shakespeare’s date of birth? • Find three websites that provide an answer • Fill in the boxes on the worksheet for each of them • Comment on any notable features of the sites or answers you discover
  3. 3. What was William Shakespeare’s date of birth? • Some sources say 23 April 1564: – The Shakespeare Country website – Infoplease’s ‘Today’s birthday’ feature
  4. 4. Shakespeare Country website http://www.shakespeare-country.com/william_shakespeare.htm Retrieved 20 June 2008
  5. 5. Shakespeare Country website http://www.shakespeare-country.com/william_shakespeare.htm Retrieved 20 June 2008
  6. 6. What was William Shakespeare’s date of birth? • In fact, we don’t really know the precise date – He was baptised on 26 April 1564 – At the time, babies were usually baptised within a few days of birth – 23 April is Shakespeare’s death date, and has also become the traditional date to commemorate his birth
  7. 7. What was William Shakespeare’s date of birth? • However, some scholars give reasons to doubt this – Shakespeare Online’s biography section suggests that if Shakespeare had been born on 23 April, the most probable date for his baptism would be 25 April, as this was a feast day
  8. 8. Shakespeare Online biography page http://www.shakespeare-online.com/biography/ Retrieved 20 June 2008
  9. 9. Summary - key things to note • The straightforward answer to a question is not always the most precise • As information is transmitted, important qualifications are sometimes lost
  10. 10. Why might we find conflicting answers to a question? • There may be real uncertainty about the answer • Authorities may disagree • There may be multiple ways of interpreting a question
  11. 11. Why might we find conflicting answers to a question? • Some sources may be more up to date than others • Answers may vary in precision • Some sources may simply be wrong
  12. 12. Questions to ask when assessing sources • Who is the author? – An individual or an institution? – What are the author’s credentials? • Is this a scholarly resource, or a more informal one? • How up to date is this source?
  13. 13. Questions to ask when assessing sources • Are there reasons to doubt the reliability of this source? – Does it include information I know to be false? – Does it contradict itself or use poor reasoning? – Is it biased towards a particular view?
  14. 14. Questions to ask when assessing sources • Is the information provided confirmed by other sources? – Are references provided? – Do other websites agree? (A major advantage of the Web is that many sources can be compared quickly and easily.)
  15. 15. Remember the three Ws • WHO wrote this site? – Is the author a trustworthy source? • WHEN was it written? – Is it up to date? • WHY was it written? – Does the author have an axe to grind?
  16. 16. This slideshow is part of Encouraging Critical Thinking Online, a set of free teaching resources designed to develop students’ analytic abilities, using the Web as source material. For the full set, please visit Intute Training: http://www.intute.ac.uk/training/
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