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ENGL 100 - Lawson: Lawson-Fallacy assignment and checking for bias

Fallacy assignment:

For the fallacy assignment, we will leave the safety and security of library databases for the wild web. You have learned how to search for scholarly sources in databases. Now you have the challenge of evaluating popular sources and websites. Ask these questions about the website you are examining for your assignment:

  • Find the organization or website author's mission statement or objective. What does it tell you? What is goal of the website? To persuade? To substantiate claims? To inform?
  • Can you detect a bias in the website? Do you consider it liberal? Conservative? Moderate? Radical? If so, what is it about the language or information that leads you to think so?
  • Who wrote the material on the website? A nonprofit organization? A university? A branch of the military? A business or individual?

Examine the publication or website you are reading for bias

Although people disagree with how bias in these publications and news outlets are characterized, this illustration shows how both liberal and conservative viewpoints range from moderate to radical to irresponsible.

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