Many Norwegian students struggle to check whether sources are reliable

Homeschooling and coronaHomeschooling and corona.Photo: Berit Roald / NTB
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Most Norwegian 15-year-olds don’t know how to check whether sources are reliable.

The results were revealed by a new analysis of reading skills carried out by the researchers at the University of Oslo, based on the PISA survey.

In the study, the researchers found that the majority of Norwegian 8th graders don’t make real assessments of the credibility of texts.

Furthermore, they don’t try to justify their views.

Compared with other Nordic countries, Norwegian students have less knowledge of such source-checking strategies than Danish, Finnish, and Swedish students.

Norwegian girls perform better than boys when it comes to critical reading, but based on the tasks in PISA, Norwegian students are on the OECD average when it comes to strategies for examining whether sources are reliable.

Not everyone has received training

The researchers pointed out that training in critical thinking and online reading in Norwegian schools has not been systematic and widespread enough.

According to the survey, less than half of Norwegian students answered that they have learned to assess information and detect fraud during school classes.

Compared with the other Nordic countries, fewer teachers in Norway (65%) answered that they feel that they have a good basis for teaching students about critical thinking than in other Nordic countries.

In Denmark, for example, the figure is 92%.

Melby: It’s important to take a closer look

Minister of Education Guri Melby (V) says that the analysis shows that Norway has a challenge that will be important to look at more closely.

“Today, young people live a larger part of their lives online. Many will influence their thoughts, and they will encounter false news. It is important that they know how to think critically about the sources,” she said.

This autumn, new curriculums were introduced in Norwegian schools, and Melby believes that source criticism and critical thinking have been given a much larger place now.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today

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