Fake & Real: a webinar series on Propaganda and Fake News

In 2017, BBC launched a special series on the grand challenges we face in the 21st Century. In this series, a panel of experts was asked to indicate what they believed were the biggest obstacles faced or to be faced by modern societies. Many of them mentioned “the breakdown of trusted sources of information” as one of the most urgent challenges. They argued that, while the need to be figure out which source of information is reliable has been constant throughout history, what magnifies the size of this challenge today is the sheer amount of available information, as well as how people access it. To this we should add the fact that, as Kevin Kelly (co-founder of Wired magazine and tech author) said to BBC in the 2017 series: “Truth is no longer dictated by authorities, but is networked by peers. For every fact there is a counter fact. All those counter facts and facts look identical online, which is confusing to most people”. And even when mistakes are spotted, “corrections do not spread very well” (Paul Resnick, University of Michigan).

This can be said for a variety of topics, including history, current affairs, or sensitive and controversial issues. Today, it is no longer only a matter of who is ‘right’ and who is ‘wrong’. It is first and foremost a matter of what is ‘fake’ and what is ‘real’.

Luckily, there are many resources and methodologies out there that can help us develop lesson plans that foster media literacy and critical thinking. During this webinar series, we will present some that we and the members of our community have tried, discussing with you their positive aspects, as well as potential pitfalls.

The Design of this Webinar Series

The webinar series will begin with a keynote lecture dedicated to defining fake news, propaganda, the relationship between the two. During the keynote, we will also discuss what is the impact of fake news
on students, and how we as educators can equip them with the tools necessary to navigate and evaluate the information they are exposed to.

The keynote will help us set the tone for the remaining sessions, and will be followed by two active workshops. In the first workshop, we will discuss how media content can be purposefully developed to manipulate the reader, and how we can help students spot manipulation and become resilient to it. In the second workshop, we will focus on how to help students deconstruct (historical) examples of propaganda, how it works, and what is its effect on society.

The webinar series will conclude with a fourth session, during which participants will have the possibility to discuss their own approaches to propaganda and fake news in the classroom. The fourth session will include also an official, festive, closing in the form of an educational game.

What will we learn?

During the webinar series, we will:

• Engage in a dialogue about Fake-News, Propaganda, and their impact on (history) education.
• Obtain a historical perspective to the notion of Fake in Europe.
• Share educational initiatives and equip teachers with ready-to-use material and methodologies which contribute in teaching media literacy and promoting students’ critical thinking.
• Discuss how to equip students with tools to help them navigate the stream of information they are constantly exposed to, become more resilient to the effects of propaganda, and grow into active citizens in the democratic space.
• Exchange innovative tools, methods, and professional knowledge with other educators in Europe and beyond.
• Introduce history and citizenship educators to the educational material developed by the House of European History, as well as available on Historiana.eu

 

How to register?

We will open registrations to this webinar series in early October.

Programme

We will be publishing the programme of the series as soon as possible.

Participation Fees

Participation to this webinar series is free of charge

We would like to thank our Individual Members for their support in developing this webinar series. The topic has been selected based on input from all members, and the recordings of our sessions are (partially) supported through individual membership fees.

Pass or Fail? Assessing Assessment

A EuroClio Webinar Series on Assessment

If there is one thing that we at EuroClio have learned during the past few years, it is that assessment is a rather complex and multifaceted part of (history and citizenship) education, and that not all teachers feel equipped for and comfortable to assess their students when it comes to formative assessment in the context of topics that might be controversial or sensitive for some of them (see, for example, the Needs Assessment carried out in 2017-2018 within the Learning to Disagree Project). At the same time, during the plenary workshop on assessment that took place in November 2020, all participants agreed that assessment is a key part of (history and citizenship) education.

Many things affect how assessment may be followed out, such as time constraints, diverse classrooms, online formats and the space left for skills and competences. How to carry out assessment in order to benefit the learning process of each individual student?

This webinar series, blending pre-recorded and live sessions, will try to tackle some of these topics, to kick-start a discussion on where we stand when it comes to assessment, and how we can develop new approaches to assessment that are better suited to fulfil not only our needs as educators, but also our students’ needs.

A very special blended format

The ‘Assessment’ webinar series consists of seven sessions, taking place in the summer of 2021, starting July 13 until August 25. The first session will be held live on zoom, followed by four pre-recorded, practical sessions which will be periodically uploaded on our Youtube page. Everything will be followed by a live keynote lecture and a live closing session, where participants will have the possibility to meet the speakers and to share their own experiences. The programme will open with a session on the relationship between creativity and assessment. During this session, we will also explore the connections between state exams and the creativity of students and teachers. During the following four pre-recorded sessions, assessment will be looked at from different perspectives, while providing tips and tricks for good practices.

Participants will be presented tools and methodologies to:

The pre-recorded sessions will be followed by a keynote lecture on the ethical implications of assessing values and attitudes. The keynote lecture will be hosted by Prof. TAN Oon Seng (Centre for Research in Child Development (CRCD) at the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore). Followed by this, a short Q&A session will take place, as well as an opportunity for participants to share their initial thoughts and hopes about the coming sessions. 

The series will end with an live interactive session, where participants will discuss their thoughts about the dedicated sessions with their peers and the designated speakers. Participants will also have an opportunity to share their personal reflections, tips and insights on assessment. 

What will you learn?

During the webinar series, you will:

  • Understand the role that attitudes and values play in learning about historical events and how to consider these in assessment;
  • Investigate the tensions between central exams, curriculum constraints, and assessing skills and competences;
  • Exchange experiences and thoughts about victories and failures of assessment practices;
  • Learn about formative assessment as a way to update learning to promote positive development.

 

 

(1) In 2016, the Council of Europe issued the “Competences for Democratic Culture”, a document which highlights various competences and skills that we should help our students develop to be active and engaged citizens. The butterfly the “butterfly” is a visual organizer that shows what the Competences for Democratic Culture are.

By registering, you will be added to a mailing list which will receive the links to join the live sessions, as well as direct links, updates, and additional material (if applicable) every time a pre-recorded session is made available online.

Participation to this series is free of charge.

Contact us!

Do you want to know more about this webinar series? Do you have a great assessment method that you would like to share with your colleagues? Have you recently read a book / listened to a podcast about assessment, which you want to recommend to your colleagues?

Let us know by emailing us at secretariat@euroclio.eu!