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Communications: Polls & poll data

The Department of Communications offers a major and minor that prepare you for a wide range of media and communication-related careers.

What do you think?....

Fact Checking Sites

Polls and public opinion

Let's see what others think.....

Books for News Consumers

The Truth Matters

The media and political landscapes are littered with untrustworthy sources and the dangerous concept of "fake news." Bartlett helps you fight this deeply troubling trend and ensure that truth is not a permanent casualty. He presents actionable tips and tricks for reading critically, judging sources, using fact-checking sites, avoiding confirmation bias, identifying trustworthy experts, and more.

The News: a User's Manual

An insightful analysis of the impact of the incessant news machine on us and our culture. The news is everywhere. We can't stop constantly checking it on our computer screens, but what is this doing to our minds? We are never taught how to make sense of the torrent of news we face daily, which has a huge influence on our sense of what matters and of how we should lead our lives. Alain de Botton takes twenty-five archetypal news stories--including an airplane crash, a murder, a celebrity interview, and a political scandal--and submits them to intense analysis. Why are disaster stories often so uplifting? Why do we enjoy watching politicians being brought down? Why are upheavals in far-off lands often so boring? What makes the love lives of celebrities so interesting? De Botton has written the ultimate guide for our frenzied era, designed to bring calm, understanding, and a measure of sanity to a news-obsessed age.


"While everyone is talking about "big data," the truth is that understanding the "little data" (stock reports, newspaper headlines, weather forecasts, etc.) is what will help you make smarter decisions at work, at home, and in every aspect of your life. The average person consumes approximately 30 gigabytes of data every single day, but has no idea how to interpret it correctly. Everydata explains, through the eyes of an expert economist and statistician, how to correctly interpret all of the small bytes of data we consume in a day. Readers will become effective, skeptical consumers of everyday data. Everydata is filled with countless examples of people misinterpreting data - oftentimes with catastrophic results: Millions of women avoid caffeine during pregnancy because they interpret correlation as causation The initial launch of failed in part because key decision-makers couldn't observe all of the data A baby food company was investigated by the Federal Trade Commission for cherry picking data Attorneys faced a $1 billion jury verdict because of outlier data The Space Shuttle Challenger exploded because the engineers were dealing with a limited sample set Hedge fund companies claim they can make smarter predictions - but the market data says otherwise Each chapter of Everydata highlights one commonly misunderstood data concept, using both real-world and hypothetical examples from a wide range of topics, including business, politics, advertising, law, engineering, retail, parenting, and more. Readers will get the answer to the question - "Now what?"--Along with concrete ways they can use this information to immediately start making smarter decisions, today and every day."

Finding Reliable Information Online

Our information-saturated environment causes us to spend too much time searching, surfing and organizing the information in our lives. But finding reliable high quality information can be a problem. We are often so buried in information-- and strapped for time-- that we grab the search results without bothering to evaluate its quality. Stebbins shows you how to cut out unreliable information and find online information you can rely on.