New tools help students find and evaluate sources in a sea of online information
Over the years, high school teacher Kristen Popescu has seen a troubling trend among her younger students doing online research: They don’t know how to find reliable sources in the sea of information surrounding them. They often only click on their first search result. When she asks about sourcing, many vaguely attribute information to a search engine — an answer that dismays her.
“We’re in a world where information is at our fingertips and we have to be able to navigate what’s credible and what’s not,” says Popescu, who teaches biology and marine science at Lake Washington High School in Kirkland, a suburb east of Seattle.
To improve her students’ information literacy, Popescu began using Search Coach, a new tool that helps students form effective search queries and evaluate the reliability of information. Now generally available in Microsoft Teams for Education, the tab app guides students on filters, operators and credibility ratings in a secure, ad-free environment.