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Cranston High School East Library: Aucoin - Legalizing Marijuana

Legalizing Marijuana

Common Task: Legalizing Marijuana


American Association of School Librarians Standards for the 21st Century Learner:

1.1.1    Follow an inquiry based process in seeking knowledge in curricular subjects, and make the real world connection for using this process in own life.

1.1.3    Develop and refine a range of questions to frame the search for new understanding.

1.1.4    Find, evaluate, and select appropriate sources to answer questions.  

1.1.5    Evaluate information found in selected sources on the basis of accuracy, validity, appropriateness for needs, importance, and social and cultural context.

Common Core State Standards:

CC.11-12.W.1 Text Types and Purposes: Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.

CC.11-12.W.2 Text Types and Purposes: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.

CC.11-12.W.2.b Text Types and Purposes: Develop the topic thoroughly by selecting the most significant and relevant facts, extended definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples appropriate to the audience’s knowledge of the topic.

CC.11-12.W.7 Research to Build and Present Knowledge: Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.

CC.11-12.W.8 Research to Build and Present Knowledge: Gather relevant information from multiple authoritative print and digital sources, using advanced searches effectively; assess the strengths and limitations of each source in terms of the task, purpose, and audience; integrate information into the text selectively to maintain the flow of ideas, avoiding plagiarism and overreliance on any one source and following a standard format for citation.

What is a credible Internet source?

What makes a source credible?  The Purdue OWL website provides helpful information for how to determine whether or not a source is credible: 

Here's an excerpt from the Purdue OWL website: 

How do I know if a source is credible?

You can ask the following questions to determine if a source is credible.

Who is the author? Credible sources are written by authors respected in their fields of study. Responsible, credible authors will cite their sources so that you can check the accuracy of and support for what they've written. (This is also a good way to find more sources for your own research.)

How recent is the source? The choice to seek recent sources depends on your topic. While sources on the American Civil War may be decades old and still contain accurate information, sources on information technologies, or other areas that are experiencing rapid changes, need to be much more current.

What is the author's purpose? When deciding which sources to use, you should take the purpose or point of view of the author into consideration. Is the author presenting a neutral, objective view of a topic? Or is the author advocating one specific view of a topic? Who is funding the research or writing of this source? A source written from a particular point of view may be credible; however, you need to be careful that your sources don't limit your coverage of a topic to one side of a debate.

Be especially careful when evaluating Internet sources! Never use Web sites where an author cannot be determined, unless the site is associated with a reputable institution such as a respected university, a credible media outlet, government program or department, or well-known non-governmental organizations. Beware of using sites like Wikipedia, which are collaboratively developed by users. Because anyone can add or change content, the validity of information on such sites may not meet the standards for academic research.

(excerpt from:  "Welcome to the Purdue OWL." Purdue OWL: Establishing Arguments. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Oct. 2013.)