Course Title: Fact Checking and Verification

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Fact Checking and Verification

Credit Points: 12.00

Terms

Course Code

Campus

Career

School

Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)

COMM2803

City Campus

Undergraduate

345H Media and Communication

Face-to-Face

Sem 2 2019,
Sem 2 2020,
Sem 2 2021

Course Coordinator: Gordon Farrer

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 5022

Course Coordinator Email: gordon.farrer@rmit.edu.au

Course Coordinator Location: B009.04.057

Course Coordinator Availability: Please check with course coordinator


Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

None


Course Description

This course introduces you to concepts and practices used by journalists and other investigators to tackle challenges posed by the Internet and social media. It reviews current debates about the importance of “facts”, and explores issues of accuracy, credibility and trustworthiness of information. You will learn how misconception and disinformation are used to undermine rational debate, and how to use practical fact-checking and verification skills to ensure accuracy and objectivity in your own news reading and writing.


Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Program Learning Outcomes This course aligns with the following Program Learning Outcomes:

  • Develop practical, and technical skills to quickly adapt to current and future changes in the industry 
  • Apply a body of theoretical and practical knowledge and specific skills in media and communication, particularly in journalism in which to base your professional practice or future study.

 


Course Learning Outcomes Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  1. Understand the difference between fact, opinion, conjecture and prediction.
  2. Identify and contrast trustworthy and untrustworthy instances of information and communication.
  3. Apply techniques and tools to fact-check claims and statements made by public figures and others.
  4. Verify the authenticity of user-generated and user-shared content (such as images and video).


Overview of Learning Activities

You will be actively engaged in learning that involves a range of activities such as studios, project work, lectures, tutorials, class discussion, individual and group activities.


Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems.   A list of recommended learning resources will be provided by your lecturer, including books, journal articles and web resources. You will also be expected to seek further resources relevant to the focus of your own learning.   The University Library has extensive resources for Journalism students. The Library has produced a subject guide that includes quality online and print resources for your studies http://rmit.libguides.com/media-and-communication.   The Library provides guides on academic referencing: http://www.rmit.edu.au/library/referencing and subject specialist help via your Liaison Librarian.


Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes. Assessment may include essays, reports, reflective papers, creative projects and presentations, individually and in groups. Assessment will cover both theoretical and practical aspects of your learning.

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.

 

ASSESSMENT TASKS   Assessment 1 – Quiz This assessment contributes 20% to your overall grade.  This assessment covers the following course learning outcomes:
  1. Understand the difference between fact, opinion, conjecture and prediction.
  2. Identify and contrast trustworthy and untrustworthy forms of information and communication.
  Assessment 2 – Primary source-checking exercise This assessment contributes 30% to your overall grade. This assessment will cover the following course learning outcomes:            2. Identify and contrast trustworthy and untrustworthy instances of information and communication.          3. Apply techniques and tools to fact-check claims and statements made by public figures and others.   Assessment 3 – Team fact check This assessment contributes 50% to your overall grade.  This assessment covers the following course learning outcomes:             2. Identify and contrast trustworthy and untrustworthy instances of information and communication.           3. Apply techniques and tools to fact-check claims and statements made by public figures and others.           4. Verify the authenticity of user-generated and user-shared content (such as images and video).