What is Health Literacy?

“The degree to which an individual has the capacity to obtain, communicate, process, and understand basic health information and services to make appropriate health decisions.”

(Affordable Care Act 2010)

What does this mean for us?

Today, we get the bulk of our information online.

URL Extensions

.COM - represents the word "commercial," and is the most widely used extension in the world. Most businesses prefer a .com domain name because it is a highly recognized symbol for having a business presence on the Internet.

.EDU - For educational institutions and universities

.GOV - Reserved for United States

.ORG - represents the word "organization," and is primarily used by non-profits groups or trade associations.

Which extensions do you believe would be most useful?

Most credible?

Easiest to understand?

What kind of health information do you see shared on social media?

Is all information online unreliable?

No, of course not! You just need to know how to evaluate the sources of your information.

Currency: The timeliness of the information

When was the information published or posted?

Has it be revised or updated?

Does your topic require current information, or will older sources work as well?

Are the links functional?

Relevance: The importance of the information for your needs

Does the information relate to your topic or answer your question?

Who is the intended audience?

Is the information at an appropriate level?

Have you looked at a variety of sources before determining this is one you will use?

Would you be comfortable citing this source in your research paper?

Authority: The source of the information

Who is the author/ publisher/ source/ sponsor?

What are the author’s credentials or organizational affiliations?

Is the author qualified to write on the topic?

Is there contact information, such as a publisher or email address?

Does the URL reveal anything about the author or source? (ex: .com .edu .gov .org .net)

Accuracy: The reliability, truthfulness, and correctness of the content

Where does the information come from?

Is the information supported by evidence?

Has the information been reviewed or refereed?

Can you verify any of the information in another source or from personal knowledge?

Does the language or tone seem unbiased and free of emotion?

Are there spelling, grammar, or typographical errors?

Purpose: The reason the information exists

What is the purpose of the information? Is it to inform, teach, sell, entertain, or persuade?

Do the authors/sponsors make their intentions or purpose clear?

Is the information fact, opinion, or propaganda?

Does the point of view appear objective and impartial?

Are there political, ideological, cultural, religious, institutional, or personal biases?


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