Casting Doubt on Data

Casting Doubt on Data
Casting Doubt on Data

Principal speaker

Dr Heather Shearer

As researchers, you are experts in identifying whether something is accurate-or are you? Perhaps this was true 20 or 30 years ago, but nowadays, fake news, deep fakes, AI and predatory publishers make sorting truth from trash increasingly difficult. Yet, even more than when Carl Sagan wrote this 32 years ago, this ability is increasingly important.

This workshop will introduce you to some critical thinking tools, to help you evaluate information (in academic publishing as well as popular social/media); as well as interactive exercises. It will provide you with the ability to quickly identify dodgy data, and to easily explain why a claim is inaccurate, to anyone-conspiracy theorists, pseudoscience promoters, or climate change deniers.

You don't need to be a quantitative researcher or to have any statistical knowledge to attend.

· Spotting dodgy data (is it too good to be true)?
· What are logical fallacies?
· Suspicious statistics (p-hacking, population sizes, chart axes, correlation and causation)
· Big data (GIGO, more is not necessarily better)
· Publication problems (publication bias, predatory journals, positive results)
· Fake news (social media, multimedia, election interfering)
· Future directions (AI, deep fakes, unreal people)
· How to refute rotten research?

Conducted Face-to-Face at the Gold Coast campus and simultaneously online via Blackboard Collaborate.


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RSVP on or before Friday 21 May 2021 10.05 am, by email , or via

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