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SCI 141: Foundations of Science: In Class Activities

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McGovern Library
(605) 995-2618

Librarian Alexis Becker
McGovern Office 113

NASA's Ingenuity: An Investigation into Facts

Follow along as Librarian Alexis tracks down the story of NASA's newest adventure to Mars. 

Scrolling through Facebook, the librarian found a post from the UK's Daily Mail about NASA's helicopter "Ingenuity" who is now flying around Mars, collecting rocks, and taking great photographs. She knows that the event is really happening, but she isn't sure if she should trust what the Daily Mail is saying (because she knows it is a gossip rag). 

Visit the Original Facebook Post Here

The librarian bravely clicks into the article and is taken to the Daily Mai's website. Here, she is quickly overwhelmed with the number of ads, running videos, and overall clutter contained on the webpage. She knows that ads and popups should set off her "This Might Not Be 100% Factual" radar, so she bravely reads through the article (knowing she shouldn't trust the summary at the top of the page provided by the Daily Mail) and figures out the facts of the story. 

Visit the Daily Mail's Article Here

Escaping the overwhelming website of the Daily Mail, the librarian goes to DuckDuckGo (a Google counterpart that doesn't track your searches - which means less adds), and types in NASA. She is wanting to get to NASA's main website, and once there, she searches for the Mars helicopter Ingenuity. Quickly, she finds an article talking about the new little helicopter who is currently buzzing around the Red Planet, taking photos and stopping back at the rover to recharge. What the librarian also finds, is that the Daily Mail article pulled almost word-for-word the contents of NASA's article for their own.

Visit NASA's Article on the Ingenuity Here

Librarian Alexis's Findings and Thoughts

The Daily Mail is not a 100% reliable source all of the time, so it is important that you verify the information through an outside source. 

The NASA article was short and to the point - it was also used verbatim in the Daily Mail's article. 

While this Daily Mail article was correct, the fact that they pulled nearly an entire article in as quotes, makes someone wonder how accurate and ethical their reporting and writing is. 

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Vitamin C and the Common Cold Activity

Your mom always says: If you have a cold, take vitamin C.
This will help shorten the length of your cold and you'll feel better sooner.

Scenario: You are browsing social media and come across three (3) different articles that talk about taking vitamin C when you have a cold. You click into the articles and read what the experts, and health officials, are saying about the link between vitamin C and the common cold. 

Your Questions: 

  1. Should I take vitamin C to help reduce the length and severity of my cold?
  2. How much vitamin C should I be taking (if I'm supposed to take any at all)?
  3. When should I take vitamin C? Should I be adding more vitamin C rich foods into my daily diet or should I bulk up on these foods only when I get a cold?
  4. Who should I believe?

Article #1: "Does vitamin C help with a cold? Yes, but it won't help prevent it" from Insider

Iallonardo, M. (2020, Feb 20). Does vitamin C help with a cold? Yes, but it won't help prevent it. Insider.

Article #2: "Does vitamin C help with the common cold?" from McMaster University's Blog

Optimal Aging Portal Blog Team. (2014, Sept 21). Does vitamin C help with the common cold? McMaster Optimal Aging Portal.

Article #3: "Vitamin C for Colds - Does It Actually Work?" from Healthline 

Gunnars, K. (2018, Apr 24). Vitamin C for Colds - Does It Actually Work? Healthline.

Real or Fake: Social Media Posts

Are these posts from social media real or fake?

Take the Full Quiz Here

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