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Teaching Climate Science by Studying Misinformation

Daniel Bedford, Weber State University

In this activity, students critically evaluate the arguments about climate change raised in a climate contrarian newspaper op-ed. This exercise is intended to strengthen student critical thinking and content knowledge at the end of unit on the climate system.

Activity will take about a class period.

Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

Climate Literacy

This Activity builds on the following concepts of Climate Literacy.

Click a topic below for supporting information, teaching ideas, and sample activities.

Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

  • Educators should read carefully the author's comments about the dangers of using these kind of opinion pieces.
  • Educators can apply the same methodology described in this activity to other opinion pieces that challenge estimated climate science.
  • Educator should be knowledgeable about typical climate denier arguments.
  • Additional materials on the http://www.skepticalscience.com/ website will support the educator in teaching this lesson.

About the Content

  • This resource contains no climate science content of its own. It supports an understanding of the role of scientific evidence and peer-review in scientific practice.
  • This activity contributes a very important aspect that is not found in may other teaching materials - how to provide students with tools of discussing climate change with deniers.

About the Pedagogy

  • This activity is a culminating project. Because of the required skills and concepts, it will likely best fit late in the semester.
  • Outstanding resource that needs to be used only by someone who is knowledgeable about arguments from climate change deniers.
  • Very careful use is required to not enforce misconceptions in students.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • The activity web page includes an activity description/assignment, instructor's notes, and solution all tied to the particular op-ed piece referenced in the activity.
Entered the Collection: August 2012 Last Reviewed: May 2016

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