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"Google is not a synonym for research." -Dan Brown, The Lost Symbol
The internet can be a great place to gather information! In fact, the sources found in this guide are excellent resources for gathering trustworthy information. However, researching using only search engines like Google can turn up some extremely unreliable websites! If you want to become a successful researcher, you must know how to evaluate websites.
Five criteria for evaluating website
Who wrote this document? What makes the author qualified? Is a name/s and contact information given? Do you know why it was written?
What person, organization, and or business published this webpage? What are their creditials?
Does this webpage read like an ad for something? Are there opinions expressed? Is there advertising? Why was this page written and for whom?
When was this webpage published? Is it up-to-date?
What topics are covered? Can this information be found elsewhere? How in-depth is the material?
*Thanks to Cornell University Library for these criteria.
When searching the internet, try to use only .edu, .gov, or .org websites. Websites ending in .com can be reputable sources sometimes, but should ALWAYS be carefully evaluated.
For more information, check out this video.
If you want to use a website and are not sure if it is a reputable source, use this website evaluation tool to help you decide.