Facts vs Opinions

What are facts?

Facts can be proven to be true or false

ex. Today is Monday.

Facts can apply to all people and places

 ex. All people must eat to live.

Facts can be duplicated over and over with the same result

ex. Yellow and blue make green.

Facts can be observed or historical

ex. The Civil War occurred from 1861-1865.

What are opinions?

Opinions are a person’s own thoughts, feelings, beliefs, or speculations.

Opinions cannot be proven and are not 100% true or false.

Examples of opinions:

  • It is a beautiful day outside.
  • Green beans are the best tasting vegetable.
  • The Harry Potter series is the best book of all time

Where might you see facts & opinions?

FACTS

  • Textbooks
  • Encyclopedias
  • Non-Fiction books
  • Parts of Newspapers
  • Dictionary
  • Primary sources (firsthand information from the past – a photograph, letter, speech, treaty, journal)

OPINIONS

  • Political speech
  • Editorial
  • Advertisement
  • Autobiography
  • Self-Help book

When trying to determine whether something is a fact or opinion online, remember….Just because something is posted on a webpage does not make it fact.

  • Check the webpage’s sources:
  • Generally .gov, .org, and .edu sites are most reliable
  • ANYONE can start a .com or .net webpage and post whatever information they choose
  • Wikipedia is not a reliable source
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