Not all news is the same. Get to know the different types of news articles. Definitions of a few of the most commonly confusing articles are below.
Op-Ed: Commentary which represents a columnists' opinion. The columnist is usually a guest writer.
Editorial: Opinion piece written by a member of a given publication's editorial board.
Note: Keep in mind that it is standard practice to have opinion pieces included in news publications as long as they are clearly represented as such. Inclusion of labelled opinion pieces does not necessarily mean the publication is biased overall. If a publication consistently represents the same opinions, and/or if their daily reporting begins to resemble opinion pieces, this is a red flag for potential editorial bias. Pay close attention to evaluating the work.
Investigative Reports: Articles by journalists after in-depth investigation of a topic, which entails researching and verifying sources. Sometimes sources cannot be identified in these reports, typically to protect a source’s identity. In such cases, journalists have done the work to check on claims for the public. Not sure if an article being represented as investigative journalism is trustworthy? Check the credentials of the author and publication.
Tips adapted from Indiana University East's Fake News Guide.