This assignment is about verifying and cross-checking claims using reputable sources. Below you find a list of six claims without any supporting citations. Most of them are true, but one is a lie. Imagine these are claims you encounter when reading a forum post in the class or a research paper. You want to fact-check them, but you need be ready with reputable sources to back up your findings.
In other words, the goal is not just to find a source that can validate your conclusions on the claims, but a source that people will trust. If the source is Wikipedia, Quora.com, or a mainstream news site, people might dismiss the citation even if you found correct information there.
We need to make sure the claims are supported by reputable studies before repeating them in our research. As mentioned above, five of these claims can be supported by more than one reputable study. One of the claims is baseless. Your task is to validate the claims using sources that would be appropriate to cite in an academic paper (15 points each) and to identify which claim cannot be supported and why (25 points). For each of the claims, you will provide the following information:
1. Information on how you found information on the claim. List a website URL and/or a library database that you used to locate the information.
2. Name the sponsor or publisher of the website or the title of the source, if you found it in a database (in other words, name who is responsible for the site you used, a newspaper, university, government agency, research institute, etc.).
3. Explain why this would be a reputable source to cite in a college-level research paper. Avoid circular explanations like, “this source is trustworthy because it’s in a trustworthy site.” Instead, report what indications of reliability and accuracy are obvious on the site. Keep in mind that databases may contain a mixture of trustworthy and untrustworthy content, so just because something is found in a database that you like does not mean it is automatically reliable. For example, ProQuest contains a mixture of peer-reviewed articles as well as news sources.
4. Quote the sentence/paragraph that verifies the claim. Demonstrate information literacy by using quotation marks and an in-text citation. Provide a full reference for the source.
Here are the six claims:
1. Egypt is a predominantly Muslim country, but Egyptian Civil Code is fashioned after the French Civil Code, with only some aspects of Islamic codes incorporated and to a much lesser extent.
2. While Kuwait’s population growth rate exceeded 5% in 2010, the growth rate had declined to approximately 1.5% by 2020.
3. In 2020, Latin America/the Caribbean and Europe were the source areas of most of the refugees taken in by the United States.
4. Operation Zapad is a recurring military exercise on the part of the Russian military and its allies which simulates an attack/invasion of western Russia, ostensibly by NATO forces.
5. In 2021, Yemen was ranked the #1 most fragile state in the world.
6. There were almost 29,000 people infected by the Ebola virus between 2014 and 2016.
Tip: if you find a news article that reports on the information, but references an official report as the source for that information, go to the report and bypass the news article. You can use news articles to point you towards reputable studies and reports.
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