News & Events

iSchool alumna fighting fake news as a school librarian

Monday, February 6, 2017

Librarians such as iSchool alumna Janelle Hagen are playing a critical role in the fight against fake news, columnist Jerry Large writes in the Feb. 6 edition of The Seattle Times.

Librarians have always helped people sort reliable information sources from deceptive ones, a skill that’s become increasingly important amid the recent surge of false information masquerading as real news. Middle- and high-school students in particular can have a difficult time distinguishing advertising, propaganda, news writing and other forms of information.

Hagen, a librarian at Lakeside School in Seattle, teaches a class called “digital life” that mixes technology and information literacy skills. She told Large that since the 2016 presidential election, she’s increased her focus on helping students evaluate information.

“It was because of all of the buzz (about fake news). You can look at the Google analytics, and the search for ‘fake news’ was unprecedented” said Hagen, a 2011 alumna of the UW Information School. “It’s our job as teachers to address what’s going on in the world.”

Hagen shared some tips for distinguishing real news from fake, as well as some of her favorite online resources.

Read more in The Seattle Times.