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Rising Temperatures, Differing Viewpoints

A Case Study on the Politics of Information



Author:

Christopher Hollister
University Libraries
University at Buffalo
cvh2@buffalo.edu

Abstract:

In this case, students work in small groups to analyze and critically evaluate the often political nature of news stories. The case was developed from two newspaper articles published in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal about the release of an EPA report on the state of the environment. While the New York Times article discusses White House editing of the report, which eliminated several references to the causes and dangers of global warming, the Wall Street Journal article focuses more on the report’s evidence of environmental improvements. Developed for an undergraduate information literacy course, the subject matter of the case also makes it suitable for use in undergraduate level courses in environmental studies, journalism, or political science.

Objectives:
  • Sharpen students’ skills to analyze and critically evaluate news stories.
  • Question the possible motivations for and influences on news stories.
  • Identify specific criteria for evaluating news stories.
Keywords: Global warming; climate change; emissions; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; EPA; Report on the Environment; science literacy; President George W. Bush; New York Times; Wall Street Journal
Topical Area: Policy issues, Science and the media
Educational Level: High school, Undergraduate lower division, Undergraduate upper division
Formats: PDF
Type/Method: Analysis, Discussion
Language: English
Subject Headings: Science (General)   Environmental Science   Journalism  
Date Posted: 10/03/05
Date Modified: N/A
Copyright: Copyright held by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Please see our usage guidelines, which outline our policy concerning permissible reproduction of this work.

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