Or is it just an abstract? Is there contact information, such as a publisher or email address? Keep in mind, you may find a third source that presents yet another statistic, so you may need to continue to research to verify accuracy. Purpose: To determine the reason why the information exists. Or, is the purpose to persuade? It must be verifiable from another source or common knowledge. In this case, a scale of 0-3 was used, with 0 representing total lack of currency, reliability, authority, and purpose; and 3 representing sufficient or acceptable currency, reliability, authority, and purpose. Key Question: How free from error is this piece of information? Sarah was frustrated that she could not remember the criteria for looking up different sources.
Anyone can make an assertion or a statement about some thing, event, or idea, but only someone who knows or understands what that thing, event, or idea is can make a reasonably reliable statement or assertion about it. This is a good article to skip, too. Also, the author's intentions should be clear. For example, items produced for scholarly or professional audiences are generally produced by experts and go through a peer evaluation process. You must know what the point of view is and why that point of view is important to your project.
In other words, when was it written? A - Accuracy Who is the source? Is the information supported by evidence? © 2010-2016 All rights reserved. To fix this problem, they developed a flip method in which the librarian covered the first two parts of the workshops which consist of finding a book using the library's catalog, finding an article using one of the databases, and then allowing students to complete the website evaluation with an assignment to look up sources. Who is the author, creator, or publisher of the source or what organization is responsible for the source? Here, currency refers to the timeliness of the source. That breakthrough cancer treatment of five years ago might have already been deemed unsafe, and several new breakthrough treatments might now be in place. Before you decide whether you want to use the source in your essay, check to see if you can verify the information. Neither you, nor the coeditors you shared it with will be able to recover it again. When you read through your source, consider how the source will effectively support your argument and how you can utilize the source in your paper.
Out of context quotations can be misleading and sometimes completely erroneous. Analyzing what different sources say about a topic is one way to understand that topic. Does the website exist solely to sell you something? R — It looks to be relevant A — No idea who the author is? Has the information been reviewed or refereed? So, how exactly do you decide if a source is crap? Due to a vast number of sources existing online, it can be difficult to tell whether these sources are trustworthy to use as tools for research. Provided by: Eastern Michigan University. How reliable and free from error is the information? Determining the knowledge and expertise of the author of information is an important aspect of evaluating the reliability of information. Accuracy Does this source hit the mark? Authority: The source of the information Key Question: Is the person, organization, or institution responsible for the intellectual content of the information knowledgeable in that subject? All you need to do is write a really good summary of what you can dig up on Wikipedia and bam—you have an article! Remember to check the footers, top menus, and the About sections of each page! Have you looked at a variety of sources before determining this is one you will use? Next, read carefully to make sure the author uses ample evidence to support claims. This process not only helps you determine credibility but also relevance.
The intended audience of an item generally determines the style of presentation, the level of technical detail, and the depth of coverage. However, the site is very content-rich and well-organized. What are the author's qualifications and credentials for writing about this subject? More importantly, the writers of the references should focus on the intended audience. The selected websites were Aclu. There are other schools that use the test as a way for students to do well on their assignments in subjects that require research papers.
The internet has particularly become a common source of information for human services professionals. Peer review is the process in which a scholar's work is reviewed by experts in a field before being accepted for publication in the case of journals. Based on these criteria, the usefulness of a website can be determined by ranking the website on each criterion on a predefined scale. What is the purpose of the information? Project: University Libraries Information Skills Modules. Moreover, they should decide if they feel comfortable enough to cite the source.
The workshop for website evaluation felt rushed and in most cases, the librarian are not able to cover it all at once. Has it been updated or revised? Determining when an item of information was published or produced is an aspect of evaluating information. Policy information keeps on changing, hence the need for human service professionals to have current information. How might the author's affiliation affect the point of view, slant, or potential bias of the source? Is t he information outdated? Reliability is also determined by the consistency of the information with other sources as well as the availability of links to sources of data. You should also consider whether the source provides sufficient coverage of the topic. Information sources with a very narrow focus or a distinct bias mean that you need to find additional sources to obtain the information on other aspects of your topic. Can you double check the information? The human services field is concerned with a broad array of , hence the need for locating objective and unbiased information.
Determining the authority of the author is also important. There are a vast number of topics and an increase in access to information. Would you be comfortable using this source for a research paper? One question in this category to ask is how does the topic relate to the information given in a source? Were there editors and fact checkers? The problems with this are pretty obvious. Who is the intended audience? Information sources with broad, shallow coverage mean that you need to find other sources of information to obtain adequate details about your topic. Who is responsible for its dissemination? The topic is also taken into consideration of whether it needs current news, media, or the latest findings from research or that can be found from older sources as well. Write an essay including specific examples from the website about your opinion on the credibility of the website and whether or not you would cite this source in an academic paper. If you are researching current events, information from ten years ago won't work.