Misinformation and Vaccine News: Using an Infographic as a News Literacy Intervention

Primary author: Shawn Domgaard
Faculty sponsor: Mina Park

Primary college/unit: Edward R. Murrow College of Communication
Campus: Pullman


This study seeks to understand the effects of an infographic with news literacy skills as an intervention can have an effect on college student’s ability to verify the accuracy of a news story, with the proposed hypothesis that it will have a significant impact. First misinformation and false news as a current topic are explored, then the importance of news literacy is established, and the effectiveness of infographics as an educational and persuasive device is demonstrated. This was a between-groups experiment with three separate groups of randomized participants. Each group was separated into a control group, an infographic intervention, or a text only intervention. The participants were all shown a mix of four false and true news articles talking about vaccines, then either given an intervention or a control, and then asked to verify four more false and true news stories. The implications of using such a small priming message are discussed.