Inoculating Against an Infodemic: Microlearning Interventions to Address COVID-19 Misinformation
Funded by the initial round of Rapid Research funding distributed by the Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR), our research seeks to improve personal health and the health of populations by combating misinformation and developing online learning interventions that improve people’s knowledge, skills, beliefs, and behaviours related to COVID-19. In particular, this research uses a design thinking approach to (1) examine digital misinformation flows pertaining to the outbreak; (2) develop, test, and improve educational interventions to reduce the spread of online misinformation. The outcomes of the project will be: (1) the creation of effective COVID-19 educational interventions; (2) the provision of health-related information recommendations and resources to guide non-profits and other community groups who wish to educate the public; (3) the development of increased individual and community capacity to identify the differences between trustworthy and untrustworthy information on the virus; and (4) the mitigation of misinformation related to COVID-19. To reach these outcomes, we will rapidly develop and deploy COVID- 19 educational interventions in a variety of cultural contexts. We will test and improve these interventions based on empirical data from a variety of sources including focus groups, surveys, social media, and field research. Instruments, data, and resources will be shared on an interactive website with licenses that allow others to reuse them for free.