Controversial Topics and Difficult Dialogues - Strategies for Addressing Misinformation in the Library

Wednesday, 6/12/2019
  • 2:00 PM-3:00 PM (Eastern)
  • 1:00 PM-2:00 PM (Central)
  • 12:00 PM-1:00 PM (Mountain)
  • 11:00 AM-12:00 PM (Pacific)

Misinformation and fake news are deeply complex and often fraught issues that can be difficult to address in the library. Misinformation is in many respects designed to play on people’s emotions, to polarize issues, and to heighten controversy. Navigating these currents in lessons on media literacy is a challenge many librarians face. This webcast will focus on strategies, techniques, and ideas to empower librarians to confidently tackle topics like misinformation in the library. If librarians are empowered and confident in their ability to address misinformation in the library, then they can better empower their patrons to strengthen their own media literacy skills and grapple with misinformation themselves.

In this webcast, participants will first unpack some of the trends, concepts, and ideas surrounding misinformation, Next participants will discuss and explore strategies and techniques for addressing controversial or polarizing information in the library. Participants will leave with concrete strategies and action plans that they can implement in their own libraries for tackling controversial topics, misinformation, and media literacy. This webcast will incorporate ample time for interactive discussion, reflection, brainstorming, sharing, and questions.

Learning Outcomes

  • Explore concepts and ideas surrounding misinformation and fake news

  • Explore connections between media literacy and information literacy, with a focus on the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy

  • Develop lessons, activities, and plans for addressing controversial topics in the library

  • Incorporate resources, activities, and ideas into library instruction sessions and programs

Who Should Attend

Instruction librarians
Librarians who work with undergraduate students


Sarah Morris is a librarian and educator with a decade of experience working in libraries, museums, K-12 schools, and higher education environments. Sarah currently works as the Head of Instruction and Engagement at the Emory University Libraries. She is also the co-founder and co-director of Nucleus Learning Network, an educational nonprofit that provides professional development, curriculum development, and consulting services to educators. She is currently partnering with a number of organizations, including Mozilla, to develop news and media literacy curriculum resources for middle and high school students. Sarah has a Master’s degree in the Humanities from the University of Chicago and a Master’s degree in Information Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. Her interests include media and news literacy education, digital citizenship, exploring ways to combat misinformation, high school to college transitions, first-year experience, exploring interdisciplinary approaches to information literacy instruction, and developing training and mentoring opportunities for new teachers.



ACRL member: $50
ALA member: $75
Nonmember: $90
Student: $40
Group*: $295

* Webcasts take place in an interactive, online classroom environment with one user/one login. If you select the group rate, one person must register, login, and keyboard during the event. A group registration allows an institution to project the Webcast to participants in the same location.

How to Register

    • Go to the Online Registration page.
    • Locate the webcast by the date of the event under the June 2019 monthly heading.
    • Select the "Register" link next to the webcast title.
    • You will need to log in with your ALA ID & password. If you do not have an ALA ID & password, you will be asked to create one in order to register.

    Webcasts will be recorded and made available to registrants as an archive, so if you sign up but cannot attend the live event, you will receive the archived webcast recording.

    Tech Requirements

    ACRL Webcasts are held in an Adobe Connect virtual classroom. Speakers or a headset for listening to the presentation are required. You may ask questions through text-based chat.  Adobe works on both PC and Apple platforms.


    If you have a question about an e-Learning opportunity or need to make arrangements for special assistance, please contact Margot Conahan (