Course information can be delivered through a variety of formats:
Lectures by teacher or guests
biographies eyewitness accounts or commentaries
Duplicates/hand-outs of (text) chapters, magazine articles
material as diaries, government documents, proceedings, minutes
Electronic media such as videos, radio programs
Internet web site pages, discussion groups
Stahl, et al (1998) found that using multiple-text sources
can only be effective if we are taught to use them properly. As
beginners, we tend to be more consistent in what information we select from
short, well-constructed texts. Longer, less structured documents tend to
be more confusing.
provide a foundation of facts and viewpoints to provide
sequence information and facts to understand issues
create a context for comparing and understanding other
are written in a neutral, objective tone
Problems with a single text for a subject or course include:
information is often "academic" lacking the drama of real life experience, adventure, and experimentation
bias is hidden or concealed ignoring competing facts, priorities, minority viewpoints
a single interpretation limits how reported facts are
prioritized/sequenced restricting viewpoint (Euro/Caucasian) or subject testing (white male)
original/eyewitness sources of information are
secondary to interpretative accounts
Additional readings and alternative sources of information can assist you to
create a richer understanding with additional information and perspective
interact or engage with facts, actors,
circumstances of the material
practice and familiarize yourself with new subject vocabulary and concepts
process opposing, even conflicting, points of view in order to assess, evaluate, defend
Conflicting information however can impede your learning, unless you can
analyze it for commonalties
reorganize or synthesize your model for understanding it
consider the impact of, and evaluate, conflicts
filter it with a context presented in the
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