Evaluating Evidence PROP Procedure • When you consider a source of information about an event, always apply the props method to determine how believable the source is. • 1st ask yourself, is there a source for the information? – If no, the information is unsupported and weakened. Choose a more reliable/truthful source. • If yes, evaluate it: EXPLAIN!!! – P – primary or secondary? – R – reason to lie or exaggerate? – O – other evidence to verify this evidence? – P – public or private? P- Primary or secondary source • Primary source is evidence given by a person present at event. It can also be an object that was part of event. • Primary sources are more desired. • You should look to collect as many primary sources as possible to create clearer picture of event. • Collect secondary sources only when primary sources are unavailable. R - Reason to lie/distort • People have reasons to lie – Make themselves or their group look good – To help their own interests (i.e. to make money) • Does the person giving the statement, writing the document, recording the audio, or identifying the object benefit from the truth being distorted, covered up , falsified sensationalized, or manipulated? • Witnesses with no reason to do the above are more desirable. O- Other evidence • Is there more information that reports the same data? – Witnesses – Statements – Recordings – Evidence • Having other evidence to verify adds strength to your argument. P – Public or private statement • Public if… – …the person knew that others would see, hear or read what they said. • Private if… – …the person stated the information in confidence or privacy. • Private is judged more accurate because it was probably more likely to reflect the speaker’s true feeling or observations. Criteria for Evaluating Evidence P Is it a primary (more reliable) or a secondary (less reliable) source? R Does the person giving the evidence have no reason to lie (more reliable)? O Is there other evidence which supports or verifies what this evidence says (more reliable) or is this the only evidence presented on this topic (less reliable)? P Is it a public (less reliable) or private (more reliable) statement? It is public if the person giving it knew others would read or see it.