What’s a claim?

´This is an assertion/declaration/ that something is true.

Examples of Claims.

´‘Remote working improves our health.’

´‘Too much testing makes children unhappy at school.’

´‘People who work are less likely to be in poverty

´‘People think refugees are a problem.

´‘Digital communication strengthens our relationships.

´‘Many people would like to travel by electric bus and tram.

How to Test a Claim

´To test a claim, consider the type of information given, sources of evidence and the methods you might use to test the claim..

´You will be given a claim from the source and you need to test if its true.

How to respond to this question.

The question requires that you justify how you would go about testing the validity of a given claim.

The question is worth 8 marks.

To score full marks, you will need to discuss a range of clearly reasoned, credible and developed ways to test the claim.

Your response should clearly show the types of information you would consider, possible sources of evidence and methods you would use to obtain the evidence.

Let us look at a sample question.

Most people know that climate change is affected by energy use. How could you test this claim?

You may consider the types of information, sources of evidence and methods you might use. How could you test this claim?

What are possible type of information?

Think of the information already available out there to help you test this claim.

Such could include,

´Comparing statistics/data on the use of smart meters.

´Data collected from interviews.

´Individual testimony or personal experience.

´Material from energy suppliers.

Possible sources of information:

  • National and local governments and their departments.
  • International organisations like UN or Word Energy Council .
  • Experts and researchers in energy companies.
  • Research reports from Universities or high school students studying Global Perspectives.
  • Pressure groups, charities and NGOs.
  • Media and the internet.

Possible methods:

  • Review of research documents and literatures sources from concerned organisations.
  • Interviewing relevant experts and researchers from energy companies as well as government officials.
  • Internet search – especially for information from energy suppliers and international organisations.
  • Questionnaires and surveys with families or the general public.

Back to the Question

Most people know that climate change is affected by energy use. How could you text this claim?

Below is a sample response.

´To test this claim, I would consider different types of information. I would start by reviewing statistical data from unbiased and reputable organisations, about how many families use smart meters to track their energy use. I would also consider personal testimonies from the general public on how much they know about climate change and its link to energy use.

´For my sources of evidence, I would focus on organisations that are trustworthy such as the International Energy Agency. I could also inquire from local government officials in the ministry of Energy, experts and researchers from energy companies about how much energy use affects climate change.

´ Finally, for my methods of data collection, I would conduct an internet search to get information from  international organisations. I would also use interviews to get information from experts working with energy companies.

In the above sample, Types of Information, Sources of Evidence and Methods of data collection have been discussed separately in their individual paragraphs.

Let’s have a look at another sample.

To test this claim, I would collect primary data by handing questionnaires to college students studying climate change and collect data about their perspective on how energy use affects climate change.

I would also conduct a research on the internet and collect statistical data on case studies done in the past, about how many people have the knowledge of how climate change is impacted by how much energy is used. All these I would get  from unbiased and credible international organizations such as the International Energy Agency.

Finally, I would interview experts and researchers working with energy companies to collect their opinions, facts and testimonies based on experience, on the connectedness between climate change and energy usage.

In the sample 2 above, The types of information, Sources of evidence and methods of data collection have been explored together in a single paragraph.