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Online Course

Making Sense of Data in the Media

The University of Sheffield via FutureLearn

387
Found in Data Science
  • Provider FutureLearn
  • Cost Free Online Course (Audit)
  • Session Finished
  • Language English
  • Certificate Paid Certificate Available
  • Effort 3 hours a week
  • Duration 3 weeks long
  • Learn more about MOOCs

Taken this course? Share your experience with other students. Write review

Overview

How can we know which numbers to trust?

Increasingly, we’re bombarded with all sorts of data about how society is changing. From opinion poll trends and migration data to economic results and government debt levels.

On this course from the Sheffield Methods Institute at University of Sheffield, we’ll look at ways of cutting through the confusion to decide what numbers reveal, when and why they (sometimes deliberately) mislead, and how to determine what is ‘fake news.’

This course is open to anyone who wants to know how to make sense of social statistics and economic data in the media.

It will be particularly useful to first-year undergraduate students studying social science, as well as school leavers who are thinking about taking a social science or quantitative social science degree.

Taught by

Todd Hartman, Aneta Piekut Educator and Mark Taylor

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Reviews for FutureLearn's Making Sense of Data in the Media Based on 13 reviews

  • 5 stars 85%
  • 4 star 8%
  • 3 star 8%
  • 2 star 0%
  • 1 star 0%

Did you take this course? Share your experience with other students.

Write a review
  • 1
Anonymous
3 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
Interesting course. We are bombarded with polls and surveys. Daily the media present us with percentages, conclusions, results, rarely if ever with a clear explanation of where the data has come from, how and why it has been collected. This course really helps us to understand these aspects and how we can become better data citizens.

People often have a skewed, negative view of the world today. Most believe things are worse than they are and often believe things are getting even worse. I think this is most unhelpful but it won't change until more people start to assess critically what they see, read or hear, this course really helps you to do that.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
4 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
Irrespective of what you take away from this course, it is one of the most important and essential courses FutureLearn puts out. We are smothered in data every day of our lives; if we cannot read that data correctly, we are at the mercy of so much 'fake' that we can be totally manipulated into believing what some faceless character wants us to believe. And the presence of social media makes it worse. The only way we can keep a clear head and an accurate understanding of the world around us is to be able to 'read' data correctly, and the FutureLearn course will enable us to do that.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
This is a really instructive, interesting and pertinent course for everyone. I went through it with comfortable ease. There was a good balance of reading, videos and not too much background information to take in. The examples were thought provoking and manageable. I feel confident to use this information in a project I am preparing for to help me produce sound evidence for my area of concern. Above all, anyone who reads, listens to or watches popular media will have their "fake news blinkers" removed. Many thanks to the team.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Stacy L
9 months ago
Stacy completed this course.
Making Sense of Data in the Media provides valuable resources (links to reputable data gathering organizations) along with tools for dissecting headlines and content in all forms of media. This course is well-organized to maximize the dissemination of information. The instructors handle the problems in the media in a positive way -- through the use of facts and evidence. Thanks to the University of Sheffield for providing this meaningful opportunity!
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
8 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
This course was very easy to follow, yet one could take it more aggressively. It was great that there was a lot of discourse from both the educators and fellow students, from all walks of life. The course gave enough resources that one could learn to determine where the data was coming from and possibly why or why not it might be accurate.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
One of the best of the FutureLearn courses I have done. Packed a lot into three weeks; really comprehensive; covered everything and made us both aware of problems and encouraged us to think. I treat every survey I now read about or see on TV with deep suspicion until I know where it comes from.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
10 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
I particularly liked that the course moved beyond just media style data reporting into data gathering, sampling , etc that I can directly apply to my work when dealing with research agencies. IT highlighted the pitfalls to look out for.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
The course was in my view excellent. I would most definitely recommend it to everyone who likes to understand how the modern world is impacting on us daily, often without enough defenses on our part to protect our own freedoms
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Llorenc S
6 months ago
Llorenc completed this course.
This course helps you a lot to increase your knowledge in data analysis and data collected field. I was be able to get some usefull skills as well as to motivate myself to carry on my academic career. I highly recommend it.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
9 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
Interesting and entertaining course. Thank you.

The set tasks provided avenues into areas of research data I had not previously encountered.

The tasks and tests were well-structured and integral to the learning experience
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
4 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
This course was an interesting introduction to the subject. The videos and reading were informative and there were tasks that definitely challenged me.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
2 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
An excellent course with some interesting examples. Things are explained very clearly. There are links to good sources of data.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Macieklew M
4 years ago
Macieklew completed this course.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
  • 1

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