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It is essential that critical readers know how to discern the difference between reasoned judgment and speculation. Some authors make reasoned judgments that are supported by research and facts. Other authors speculate by making claims that are not supported by facts and research findings. Readers must be able to think critically and logically in order to evaluate the accuracy and validity of the information presented by the author. Such skills will help the reader know when to read additional text in order to verify the claims an author is making.

Review the differences amongst facts, reasoned judgments and speculation in a text by clicking on each topic in the activity below and continuing to read the article.

Now go to the following page to test your ability to distinguish between facts, reasoned judgments and speculation in a text.