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Library Guides

Evaluating Internet Sources

More Information

For more information about internet resources, see the following Library Guides:

Introduction

Evaluating Information on the Internet

Even if you already feel comfortable evaluating information in paper form, you may not be sure about information on the internet. This guide will help you:

  • Identify what you're looking at online.
  • Decide if the internet source is appropriate for your research.
  • Find the information to create an APA citation.

Move through the tabs of this guide to understand how to evaluate the who, what, when, where, why, and how of websites.  Each page provides some examples of what you may see out there in in the wild world of the internet.

Evaluating Articles Checklist

Before using any resource in a paper or assignment, you'll want to evaluate it. Use the guidelines below to help you determine the reliability and scholarliness of resources:

Authority:

What are the author's credentials?

Have you seen the author mentioned or cited elsewhere?

Is the author associated with an institution or organization?

    Date:

    When was it published?

    Do you need current sources for your topic?

    Is this a resource that is updated frequently?

    Publisher:

    Is this published by an academic or scholarly publisher?

    Does a well-known and trusted organization take responsibility for the content?

    Scope:

    How broadly is the subject covered?

    Does it include enough detail about the topic?

      Audience:

      What is the audience for the resource?

      Does the content of the source match its intended audience?

        Accuracy:

        Does it include factual information, analysis or opinion?

        Is the source objective?

        Does it cover evidence and arguments for and against the thesis?

         

        Want More Help?

        For further information, revisit the following RAILS pages: