Creative Constructor
Lab Virtual
Leadership Exchange
at ISTELive 21
Edtech Advocacy &
Policy Summit

Flagging Down the Truth: Student Credibility Tool

Participate and share

Participate and share : Interactive lecture

Sunday, June 23, 8:30–9:30 am
Location: 113BC

Megan Denk   Laura Reed  
Website evaluation is a critical, foundational skill students need as Knowledge Constructors, yet too few students--and educators--are able to consistently identify unreliable, skewed, and false information online. This session introduces a new tool that helps students identify credible sources like real-life fact checkers in just three steps.

Audience: Curriculum/district specialists, Teachers, Library media specialists
Skill level: Intermediate
Attendee devices: Devices required
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Windows, Android, iOS
Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Focus: Digital age teaching & learning
Topic: Online tools, apps and resources
Grade level: 6-12
Subject area: Language arts, Social studies
ISTE Standards: For Coaches:
Visionary Leadership
  • Contribute to the development, communication and implementation of a shared vision for the comprehensive use of technology to support a digital age education for all students.
For Students:
Knowledge Constructor
  • Students evaluate the accuracy, perspective, credibility and relevance of information, media, data or other resources.

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

Website evaluation is one of the most critical, foundational skills students need as Knowledge Constructors. One of the issues is that many people overestimate their skill level in this area. If the teacher does not have a clear framework or process for website evaluation, they often fall back on overgeneralized, outdated, and inaccurate methods and advice to students (e.g. .org is good but .com is bad). The problem is compounded by the lengthy, cumbersome instructional tools and strategies most schools and librarians (LMS) still rely on to teach website evaluation. This session will introduce a new tool, Red Flag/Green Flag, that distills the task of website evaluation in the three main tasks/questions used by real-life fact checkers:
~Who or what is behind the website?
~Is the author qualified/expert?
~Is the content backed up with appropriate, credible sources?

Participants will be able to…
~Understand the pitfalls of current evaluation tools and strategies
~Understand why and how a new evaluation tool was created
~Learn how the Red Flag/Green Flag evaluation tool works
~Participate in using the new tool as students do
~Learn about student success and retention rates
~Reflect on this can be implemented in their home district/school/classroom
~Leave with a simple, straightforward tool/method that can revolutionize their students’ website evaluation skills


Introduction (5-10 minutes)
~Participants will use their prior knowledge to evaluate two seemingly credible sources to determine which is credible
~Presenters will review the answers, asking how participants came to the conclusion

Presentation of New Tool (10 minutes)
~Presenters will use the activity information to introduce how inaccurate, cumbersome, or outdated most evaluations tools are for students
~Presenters will demonstrate how and why a new evaluation tool was created
~Presenters will explain how the Red Flag/Green Flag tool works and the reasoning behind it

Use of Tool (35-40 minutes)
~Participants will use the tool to evaluate two different sources and record their notice/wonders
~Presenters will review the successes of the tool in the Rush-Henrietta Central School District
~Participants will ask presenters questions
~Participants will reflect how this can be implemented in their district/school/classroom
~Presenters will assist in this process

Wrap-Up (5 minutes)
~Participants will leave with a simple, straightforward tool/method that can revolutionize their students’ website evaluation skills

Supporting research
McGrew, S., Ortega, T., Breakstone, J., & Wineburg, S. (2017). The challenge that's bigger than fake news. American Educator. Retrieved from

More [+]


Megan Denk, Rush-Henrietta Central School District
Laura Reed, Rush-Henrietta Central School District

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