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PISA in Focus

PISA in Focus is a series of monthly education policy-oriented notes designed to describe a PISA topic in a concise, user-friendly way.

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Are 15-year-olds prepared to deal with fake news and misinformation?

Digital technologies have changed how people interact with information. PISA data shows that 15-year-olds increasingly read online to fulfil information needs (e.g. online news versus newspapers). At the same time, technological changes in the digitalisation of communication continue to reshape people’s habits (e.g. chats online versus emails). Fifteen-year-olds’ total online consumption has risen from 21 hours a week in PISA 2012 to 35 hours per week in PISA 2018 – almost the equivalent of an average adult workweek in OECD countries. The massive information flow that characterises the digital era demands that readers be able to distinguish between fact and opinion, and learn strategies to detect biased information and malicious content such as phishing emails or fake news.

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