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ENG 101 Composition - Adase - Fall 2021: SIFT METHOD

Introduction to SIFT

SIFT ( The Four Moves) is an evaluation method developed by digital literacy expert Michael Caulfield from the Washington State University Vancouver Canada, to help you learn to think like a fact-checker begin to sort fact from fiction and everything in between on the Web.

The SIFT  strategy is quick and can be applied to evaluate various kinds of online content: Social media posts, memes, statistics, videos, images, news articles, scholarly articles, etc. 

SIFT is a series  of actions to take  to do when you are trying to determined the credibility of a source you have found online.  These " things to do" are called moves.  There are four of them . The four moves: Stop, Investigate the sources, find better coverage, trace the original context.


The acronym you use to remember the action steps is SIFT


Adapted from SIFT:STOP,Investigate, FInd, Trace: What is SIFT? Wayne State University Library System



Fake out is an interactive game designed to see how good you are at recognizing true vs false stories on the web. 

To play Fakeout!, click here. (Direct URL:

SIFT Quick Video Tutorial ( Mike Caulfeild)

Prompt Examples:

Below are a few prompts  to work through to help you make the Moves to evaluate sources for credibility. 


Alligator prompt:

Alligator discussion:


Keanu Reeves prompt

Why Lateral Reading ( 3:15)

Video 2 : Investigate the Source ( 2:44)

Can you determine the credibility of this website


Note: This SIFT method guide was adapted from Michael Caulfield's "Check, Please!" course. The canonical version of this course exists at The text and media of this site, where possible, is released into the CC-BY, and free for reuse and revision. We ask people copying this course to leave this note intact, so that students and teachers can find their way back to the original (periodically updated) version if necessary. We also ask librarians and reporters to consider linking to the canonical version.

As the authors of the original version have not reviewed any other copy's modifications, the text of any site not arrived at through the above link should not be sourced to the original authors.