Kick off the new school year with lessons from our Back to School 2021 collection to help students express themselves, build relationships, and stay organized.

5. Answer “When?”, “Where?”, and “Why?”

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In this video, you will read through your article and make notes about when it was written, where the author got their information, and why the article was written.

Answering the questions when, where and why will tell you if the information in the article is current and accurate, and if the article’s purpose is to inform or persuade.

To begin, find out when your article was written.

The publication date may be included in the article itself, or it may appear elsewhere on the website.

Is the article recent?

If not, is its content still relevant, or is it outdated?

Information changes all the time, so even an article that is a few years old may contain data that is now inaccurate, or ideas that are no longer relevant.

Type your observations about when the article was written in the When row of your table.

Next, try to discover where the article’s information comes from.

Does the article include citations, such as footnotes, that mention the sources of its information?

Does it have links to its sources or to data collected about the topic?

Can you find similar claims in other sources?

Search the internet to verify the claims made in the article.

If other credible sources make similar claims or if you can find data that supports your article, it may be trustworthy.

If you cannot verify the information in the article on other websites or in other sources, the article may not be credible.

Type your observations about where the author got their information in the Where row of your table.

Finally, try to determine why the author wrote the article.

Is the author writing to inform you about an important issue?

Or Is the article for entertainment and not intended to educate with truthful information?

A tabloid article about a celebrity, for example, might share rumors rather than actual facts.

Or is the author trying to persuade you to perform a specific action?

For example, an article might try to get you to click on a link, submit personal information, or make a purchase.

This is a clue that the article may not be credible.

Type your ideas about why the author wrote the article in the Why row of your table.

Then, move on to the next video to decide if it is credible.

Now, it’s your turn: Add notes to the When?, Where?, and Why?

rows of your table.


  1. Add notes to the “When?”, “Where?”, and “Why?” rows of your table.