Civic Education

Featured

Explore Civic Education

  • Jessica Cecil listens as Mark Thompson speaks at the RAND Europe Council of Advisors meeting in London, UK, May 6, 2022, video still from RAND Europe Council of Advisors meeting

    Blog

    Combating Disinformation by Bolstering Truth and Trust

    For Jessica Cecil, founder and former head of the Trusted News Initiative, today feels a bit like the Dark Ages after the fall of the Roman Empire, in which agreed-upon facts endure in only a few isolated places of elite discussion and there is no common language of politics. She spoke about the need for governments, companies, news organizations, and relevant civil society groups to work together to combat disinformation at a meeting of RAND Europe's Council of Advisors.

    May 24, 2022

  • Illustration of a woman sitting inside a glass dome surrounded by people screaming in megaphones, illustration by Feodora Chiosea/Getty Images

    Commentary

    'Truth Decay' in Europe Is Real, but Its Advance Can Be Slowed

    Though present in Europe, the evidence suggests that trends of Truth Decay are not as widespread or as pronounced as they are in the United States. There is still time for policymakers to intervene and limit their growth.

    May 17, 2022

  • Europe on a globe, photo by Vlad Turchenko/Adobe Stock

    Multimedia

    Expert Insights: Truth Decay in Europe

    The role of facts and data in public life in Europe is changing and a new study has found evidence of the signs of Truth Decay. However, there is still time to act and help prevent or slow its growth. Senior researchers Axelle Devaux and Stijn Hoorens discuss the research in the Expert Insights podcast.

    May 16, 2022

  • News Release

    News Release

    RAND Campaign Encourages Individuals to Take Action Against Truth Decay

    Amid the diminishing role of facts and analysis in American public life—a phenomenon called Truth Decay—the RAND Corporation is launching a public information campaign on social media to build understanding of Truth Decay and how individuals can tackle it by scrutinizing information they believe and share.

    May 11, 2022

  • A human face outline and painted pattern composition evoking human relationships, mind, psychology, and creativity, image by Andrew Ostrovsky/Adobe Stock

    Report

    How Reasoning and Cognitive Biases Affect the Ability to Resist Truth Decay

    Truth Decay is the diminishing role of facts in American public life. What role do human reasoning processes and cognitive biases play in this phenomenon? And how can these factors affect an individual's resistance or susceptibility to Truth Decay?

    Mar 29, 2022

  • An illustration depicting the difference between light and darkness, image by Alyson Youngblood/RAND Corporation

    Q&A

    What You Can Do to Help Stop Truth Decay

    Truth Decay, the diminishing role of facts in American public life, isn't a problem that any one person can fix. But there are simple steps that individuals can take to help counter it.

    Mar 29, 2022

  • Map of Europe in decay, illustration by ermess/Adobe Stock

    Report

    Truth Decay in Europe

    Truth Decay, the diminishing role of facts in public life, is less prevalent across Europe than it is in the United States. What actions can be taken now to stop Truth Decay from spreading further—and potentially prevent its serious consequences?

    Feb 23, 2022

  • Teacher Mary Yi works with fourth-grade students at the Sokolowski School in Chelsea, Massachusetts, September 15, 2021, photo by Brian Snyder/Reuters

    Report

    Approaches and Obstacles to Teaching Media Literacy

    The majority of U.S. public schools address media literacy competencies in some manner. But according to K–12 teachers, instruction is unevenly implemented, at best, and obstacles are common. Media literacy education also varies across schools of different ethnic compositions and poverty levels.

    Sep 23, 2021

  • Kindergarten teacher Princess Bryant (R) and paraprofessional Emily Lichtenstein meet their incoming students and parents remotely before the first day of classes in the new school year at the Tynan Elementary School in Boston, Massachusetts, September 18, 2020, photo by Brian Snyder/Reuters

    Commentary

    How State Critical Race Theory Bans Could Trickle Down to the Classroom

    Given the potential blowback to teaching anything related to race or gender, avoiding lessons on the experiences of women or people of color will be the path of least resistance in many schools. But discussing racism and sexism in a safe environment is crucial for students to become active, knowledgeable citizens.

    Aug 31, 2021

  • High school students and their teacher work on laptops during class, photo by eyecrave/Getty Images

    Report

    Guidance for Teaching Media Literacy in Schools

    Media literacy education can help counter “Truth Decay” by teaching young people how to consume media and contribute responsibly to the information ecosystem. To this end, RAND researchers developed recommendations for implementing media literacy standards in the classroom.

    Aug 4, 2021

  • Woman using smartphone with social network icons, photo by Vladimir Vladimirov/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Platforms Should Use Algorithms to Help Users Help Themselves

    Social media users generate massive volumes of content, which then spreads at extraordinary speeds. Yet platforms generally rely on a slow process of human moderation to remove prohibited content. What if moderation could happen before the content is even posted?

    Jul 20, 2021

  • A woman reads the news on her phone, photo by fizkes/Getty Images

    Project

    Truth Decay: Causes, Consequences, and Solutions

    The United States is experiencing an era of

    Mar 26, 2021

  • An illustration of human hands holding various smart devices, image by zubada/Getty Images

    Project

    Explore Truth Decay Research and Commentary by Topic

    From how disinformation spreads online to Americans' trust in democratic institutions, RAND researchers are studying a wide range of topics related to Truth Decay—the diminishing role of facts in U.S. public life.

    Mar 23, 2021

  • Pro-Trump supporters hold flags as they gather at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, January 6, 2021, photo by Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

    Commentary

    Giving Teachers the Tools They Need to Provide 21st-Century Civic Education

    The Capitol attack has rightly led to many calls for teachers to address civic education in a much more robust way in their classrooms. However, a national survey of social studies teachers suggests that teachers lack the critical training and incentives to do so.

    Feb 23, 2021

  • Books and a laptop in a library, photo by Nutthaseth Vanchaichana/Getty Images

    Report

    Media Literacy Standards to Counter Truth Decay

    Media literacy may be a powerful tool against Truth Decay, the diminishing role of facts in public life. What standards could help teachers, policymakers, and others implement media literacy education more effectively?

    Jan 19, 2021

  • An explosion caused by a police munition is seen while supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump gather in front of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., January 6, 2021, photo by Leah Millis/Reuters

    Announcement

    Statement by Michael D. Rich on the U.S. Capitol Siege

    The audacity of the rioters at the U.S. Capitol and the violence they perpetrated should have no place in the political process, although tragically, and all too often, violence finds its home in the United States.

    Jan 7, 2021

  • Blog

    RAND Commentary Highlights of 2020

    The roughly 400 op-eds and blog posts published by RAND researchers during the year reflected an enormous variety of expertise and perspectives, from remote education to election cybersecurity to the economic harms of racial disparities. Here are 10 highlights that landed in high-profile news outlets.

    Dec 18, 2020

  • News Release

    News Release

    Most U.S. Social Studies Teachers Feel Unprepared to Teach Civic Learning, a Gap That Could Contribute to Truth Decay

    Only one in five social studies teachers in U.S. public schools report feeling very well prepared to support students' civic learning, saying they need additional aid with instructional materials, professional development, and training.

    Dec 8, 2020

  • A teenage girl looks through a fenced barrier in front of the White House, photo by EyeJoy/Getty Images

    Report

    Preparing Children for Civic Life in the Era of Truth Decay

    To restore the role of facts in public life, it's important for America's youth to develop strong civic skills. Students can build these skills in the classroom, but teachers need better resources and more support to help them do it.

    Dec 8, 2020

  • A second grade student votes during a mock election at his school in Gainesville Florida, Nov. 3, 2020, photo by Brad McClenny/Reuters

    Article

    Want to Rebuild Public Trust? Focus on Civic Education

    Truth Decay—the diminishing role of facts in American public life—has led to political paralysis, the erosion of civil discourse, and widespread uncertainty. Investing in civic education could help turn the tide.

    Dec 8, 2020

Research conducted by