• Course Code:  JN22.1E

  • Term:  Self paced

  • Open for Enrollment

  • Self-paced

  • Course Author(s)
    Sue Llewellyn
Verification b

Covering COVID-19 - Verification

Self paced

  • Circles
    Thomson Foundation


Please contact journalismnow@thomsonfoundation.org if you are having difficulties enrolling into this course

This course was created with the support of First Draft, one of the leading voices in the fight against disinformation, and is an introduction to their more advanced course on the subject.


Covid-19 has not only become a pandemic but has led, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), to an “infodemic” with an overload of dangerous misinformation circulating around it. This course is designed to help you as journalists sift through that information “overload” to create credible, verified information to your viewers and readers at a time when they need accurate information. It will help you understand the types of misinformation you might find on social media and online. You will learn about techniques and tools to help identify false information and have the confidence to publish verified accounts. It contains plenty of additional resources, should you wish to explore verification in more depth.


  • How to understand the different types of information disorder, and the motivations of its creators
  • How to identify false and misleading information on social media
  • How to identify, report and debunk disinformation safely
  • How to critically analyse information and digital footprints from a range of sources
  • How to verify information and images using a range of open-source tools


Meet your instructors

SUE LLEWELLYN, your course instructor, has more than 30 years experience as a journalist, social media specialist and trainer. Since leaving the BBC where she was a journalist and reporter, she has trained more than 6,000 journalists and other news and communications professionals.

Sue is joined by experts in verification from First Draft.


Dr CLAIRE WARDLE - Co-founder and Executive Director, First Draft, New York.

Education and Outreach Manager, First Draft, London.

Training and Support Manager, First Draft, London

Partnerships and Programmes Manager, New York.

Section 1
gives an overview of the course.

Section 2
outlines the scale of the Covid-19 infodemic, explains why fighting misinformation matters and highlights common types of information disorder being shared online

Section 3
defines the problem of information disorder and explains the characteristics of misinformation that you need to be aware of

Section 4
explains how people find information online and how you can ensure they find accurate information from official verified sources

Section 5
provides you with tips, tools and techniques to verify information you find online

Section 6
helps you to hone your headlines and choose images carefully, while providing  tips for responsible reporting and correcting of misinformation

Section 7
shows how you can keep yourself and your colleagues safe, and where you can get help so you don’t become a victim of trauma or emotional stress.

Section 8
is a list of official sources and fact-checking resources to help you navigate your way through this river of noise and information pollution

You can complete this course within 4 hours across multiple sections.

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Covering COVID-19 - Verification


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