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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Science Literacy by University of Alberta

212 ratings

About the Course

Fake news or good science? In a world where we have access to unlimited information, it is hard to sift through the echo chamber of opinions fueled by emotions and personal biases, rather than scientific evidence. Science Literacy will teach you about the process of science, how to think critically, how to differentiate science from pseudoscience, how indigenous wisdom can inform science, how to understand and design a scientific study, and how to critically evaluate scientific communication in the media. Every module will build your new skill-base with real life examples, and at the end of each module you will have to apply these skills to scientific questions, talking points and controversies in the world. Warning: this course requires an open mind and the ability to self-reflect. In Science Literacy, you’ll hear from special guests: Timothy Caulfield, Canada Research Chair in Health Law and Policy and star of Netflix’s “A User's Guide to Cheating Death” on pseudoscience Dr. Torah Kachur, Scientist and CBC journalist on science communication (and miscommunication!) Christian Nelson, Citizen Scientist and creator of Edmonton Weather Nerdery, on experimental design Metis Elder Elmer Ghostkeeper and Cree Elder Kokum Rose Wabasca, on the holistic nature of Indigenous wisdom and how it can work with the scientific process Associate Professor in Psychology, Dr. David Rast on uncertainty and decision making...

Top reviews


Jan 1, 2021

This course was practical, informative and presented in an engaging manner. Anyone who wants to increase their science literacy or brush up their skills will find this course valuable.


Aug 26, 2021

A course that is fit for the times. Excellent resource for teachers like myself to help develop ideas to help high school students develop scientific and critical literacy.

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1 - 25 of 79 Reviews for Science Literacy

By Cassie P

Nov 23, 2020

Although science literacy is a very important subject, this course was flawed in several ways, and I would not recommend it to anyone. It seems like it was hastily thrown together without much review. The structure lacked cohesion and lessons seemed to jump around without much connection between each section. The presenters were condescending. There were several grammatical and spelling errors in the quizzes. And, although I appreciate giving indigenous scientists a voice, and indeed would like to see it happen more, they were not included in a way that made sense. Rather it seemed like they were included haphazardly to make sure the course checked off the diversity box. It has a lot of potential, but it has not met it.

By Lincoln E

Feb 16, 2021

It was a really good course for people who want to learn to be sceptic about what they hear on the News and Social Media, and to take everything with a grain of salt. I think this will really help me while I try to gain a good understanding about the sciences. I hope you like it too!

By Bev P

Nov 30, 2020

Excellent course for the science-minded and those who aren't. The course study is definitely needed to help navigate the tsunami of info that can so easily drown us all.

By Oktay H

Mar 30, 2021

Well written & concise. Great information & aids development of thinking processes to be able to start critically evaluating scientific literature from all sources.

By Adam G

Nov 28, 2020

This course was a very well-delivered collection of scientific principles and critical thinking skills. It comes at a very pertinent time when the world is dealing with more uncertainty than ever, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to separate fact from fiction. I believe that the spread of misinformation is a "great filter" for the human race, and will limit us from achieving our potential if we do not take an active role in quashing it. The presentation of the course varied, with videos, readings, assignments and quizzes. I felt this kept the content engaging and fit very well with the take-away lessons of forming your own conclusions through evidence-based thinking. I have a degree in science, and am passionate about the pursuit of knowledge for its own sake, but this course has made me want to do more to help foster critical thinking and promote open data for a brighter future. Thanks to Claire, Rachel, and their guests for putting this together.

By R L F

Nov 21, 2020

I enjoyed the pace of the course. The use of different type of media, evaluation tools and enthusiasm shown in the videos kept me challenged and involved. When I found myself challenged with the readings and content I knew that I would come out the other end of the lesson with the concepts in place. How? Because the design of the evaluations was built that way.

The relevance of the course with current issues made me think about interactions with science, social media and personalities around me. I practiced different scenarios using the skills I had obtained while interacting with the people around me.

I appreciated the positivity, enthusiasm, energy and depth of the course. I have recommended it to friends and family as a way to help navigate the current mire of our world.

Many thanks for your expertise and commitment to spreading the science.

RL Fisk

By Helene T

Nov 18, 2020

I found the weekly work quite heavy , particularly Module 5, as I work during the day and I am quite elderly. However, I enjoyed the course immensely and recommend it to those engaged in science or interested in science. Although I worked in clinical laboratories four decades ago before changing careers, and had a science background, it was great to refresh and relearn statistical concepts and become more familiar with the role of both traditional media and social media in the communication of science today. I am a great fan of Open Access publications as well and hope that Open Access will become ever more popular and acceptable as the scientific world evolves in the 21st Century. A sincere thank you to the course presenters.

By Marie N B

Nov 22, 2020

This course really helped me to enhance my critical thinking skills and continue to be skeptical with every information that I read or watch on the news or social media. I will use my learnings to spread it to the youth. THANK YOU!

By Markus W

Nov 8, 2020

Quirky content, long-winded, grammatical flaws in the wuizzes that makes some wuestions hard to understand. Intention and necessity of course are good, but execution is moderate (and level for beginners).

By Keith M

Dec 17, 2020

Excellent course. Very informative. Provides the basic tools required to evaluate the veracity of health and science articles in print and online media. Stimulates much thought re the importance and relevance of good science esp in this covid/ fake news world we are confronted with on a daily basis. The course identifies and emphasizes the impeccable nature of good science practices and its importance in combating the endless stream of misinformation . The course will consolidate or initiate a faith in science for the believers and non believers alike. A very relevant course for these Covid times

By S. B

Mar 2, 2021

Really enjoyed doing this course and found it very informative. The format was great, videos, drag and drop, quizzes, etc. I found that self learning this on the internet that I really appreciated the ability to be able to do tasks over again to correct any errors. It allowed me learn more fully. I also really enjoyed the First Nations input. I would have liked a little more. In any case, with all of the information and craziness out there I feel a little more grounded in how to approach it all. Thank you so much. Peace and grace to you all.

By Terry A

Jun 8, 2021

I enjoyed the breadth and scope of the course very much! The examples were real world and "up to the second". A review of spelling and punctuation in the feedback comments and exercise instructions for the drag and drop exercises is warranted. It should also be made clear when multiple choices are acceptable (and expected) in the multiple choice quiz questions. This will reduce test frustration.

I have recommended this course as a primer for paramedics interested in getting involved with research. Well done!

By Kelly B

Dec 13, 2020

You may think that you are a logical and skeptical person and can see through much of the bias and rhetoric that comes at you, but take this course. You will be surprised at how much you have taken for granted from all the information bombarding you on a daily basis.

There are some great pointers for developing better methods to evaluate information and new sources for more disciplined and objective references presented in this course. Sign up! You will not be disapointed.

By Patti B

Jan 4, 2021

Very well put together course for all learners.

Knowing how to critical think is a lost art. This course should be provided over and over to capture more people. I agree with others in that the drag and drop exercises were somewhat tedious. But they were beneficial in the end. Thank you for this free course. I learned a lot.

By Cynthia D

Jan 10, 2021

I have learned so much, and really challenged myself, so thank you! I will look at things differently from now on, and feel more powerful in my choices and interpretations in the future. I believe every human should take this course, especially the ones with no or little formal science education prior (like me!).


By Philippe P M

Dec 17, 2020

Amazing job ladies, i enjoyed this science literacy course so much, it was generally easy understanding and explanations were concise except for maybe some drag and drop exercises were difficult, but I still learned and ultimately that's what matter, Thank you so much

By Joan G B

Nov 27, 2020

I really learned a lot from this course. The topics and examples are very timely and relevant to the present situation. I enjoyed learning this course. It made me realized that there are so many things that I haven't known yet.

By Stephanie L

Jan 2, 2021

This course was practical, informative and presented in an engaging manner. Anyone who wants to increase their science literacy or brush up their skills will find this course valuable.

By Anthony N D G

Aug 27, 2021

A course that is fit for the times. Excellent resource for teachers like myself to help develop ideas to help high school students develop scientific and critical literacy.

By Joe H

Apr 27, 2022

Good course and very informative. Looking back on some of my beliefs and what I have digested as information, I now can critically evaluate thier weight.

By Marcelo G

Apr 12, 2021

El Curso me resultó más que enriquecedor, ampliando conocimientos y fundamentos esenciales aplicables a diferentes campos no sólo el científico

By Flavio G

Dec 16, 2020

A lot of interesting things for a (scientifically) illitterate as I am.

Relatively easy to follow, despite of my italian mother tongue. :-)

By Methsara B

Nov 16, 2021

What an insightful and informative course. Broadened the knowledge about timely topics and how to look at problems in a scientific eye.

By Jim&Noreen

Mar 3, 2021

very useful for critically analyzing news articles, credentials and understanding personal biases. Great course!