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Instruction Resources

Authority is Constructed and Contextual

Big Ideas:

  • There are different shades of authority and they hold different weight in different situations
  • Preferencing traditional sources can hinder non-traditional or diverse points of view and that privilege influences perceptions of authority
  • Authority should be viewed with an attitude of informed skepticism

Possible Session Level Learning Outcomes:

  • Students will be able to determine what makes an authoritative source in their disciplines
  • Students will recognize that traditional notions of granting authority might hinder diverse ideas and world views
  • Students will acknowledge that oneself may be seen as an authority in a particular area, and recognize the responsibilities entailed
  • Students will evaluate sources using a variety of criteria in order to cultivate a skeptical stance and a self-awareness of their own biases and world views