The first move of SIFT is the simplest. STOP reminds you of two things:
If your answer to any of these questions is "I don't know," then, it's time to move onto the next step of SIFT--Investigate.
Feeling overwhelmed? You're not alone...
In 2016, a study asked nearly 8,000 students in middle school, high school and college to perform five web evaluation tasks. Here are some of the results:
Source: Wineburg, Sam, Sarah McGrew, Joel Breakstone, and Teresa Ortega. Evaluating Information: The Cornerstone of Civic Online Reasoning. Stanford Digital Repository, 22 Nov. 2016.
Note: This SIFT method guide was adapted from Michael Caulfield's "Check, Please!" course at http://lessons.checkplease.cc. The text and media is (for the most part) CC-BY, and free for reuse and revision. The authors ask that people copying this course leave this note intact, so that students and instructors can find their way back to the original (periodically updated) version if necessary.
The SIFT LibGuide at https://guides.lib.wayne.edu/sift (Wayne State University Library System), and the OER book Introduction to College Research (Butler, et al.) were also adapted in the creation of this guide.
Prebunking allows students to understand the motivations of those who spread disinformation, and thus, helps them to recognize false and biased content when they encounter it. This can be achieved through online games, such as Bad News, where students become the purveyors of "fake news" themselves (in a controlled manner) in order to understand and neutralize the effects of online disinformation.
Prebunking uses the social psychology method of "attitude inoculation," which (similar to how vaccines inoculate our bodies against harmful viruses), helps to build up a person's resistance to disinformation. This idea works hand-in-hand with the first step of SIFT, which is STOP. Being mindful of the motives of disinformation creators can help students to stop and think before using or sharing questionable sources.
This video discusses the dangers of online disinformation and why it's important to STOP and learn about where information comes from.