Criticality PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 07 November 2010 19:38

It is vital that you take a critical approach to the resources which are available on YouTube.

Why? Because it is user-generated content and has not been through any moderation or peer-review process.

Why? Because all knowledge is fallible

Why? Because there is more than one universal truth and millions of variation of truth or verisimiliture


Step 1) Search critically

It is important that you are critical about your search before it begins.

Think about how the terms you search for might sway the findings and make a note. Review post-search, were you right?

Will students anticipate this effect? How might they respond?

Is snowball searching more or less likely to lead to variation in findings?

Step 2) Consider authorship critically

The previous section has determined how you can find out about the author of a YouTube video and how you can think critically about the impact of author intention on the video content.

How does trust impact on the relationship with authors or channels?

Do you 'trust' a video as 'truthful' if offered from a University, or the BBC, or NASA?

Do you 'trust' a video as 'truthful' if offered from a University by students as much as if made by staff, or less or more?

Does it depend on the topic?

How can you clearly identify promotional YouTube videos? What about when promotional messages are not overt?

Step 3) Consider content critically

Review the content as you watch it and note your reaction

Try to identify the story, key players, intended messages and any hidden messages

How does this fit with your current knowledge, values and attitues in relation to this topic?

Do you trust the content? Why or why not?

Are there other videos or resources which support this position? Are there alternatives which oppose this position?


There are a range of exercise for you to practice critical thinking skills on the following pages