Anyone can place material on the Internet. That is why it is so important to evaluate the information that you find. Ask yourself the following questions when reviewing Internet sites:
AUTHORITY (who is responsible for the content?)
- Does the author provide credentials, qualifications?
- Is the sponsor/location of the site (identified by the URL) appropriate for the site's material? i.e. .edu, .org, .gov
- Does the author provide an email address or means of contact?
- Is there a bibliography or other documentation?
- Is the information accurate, free of mistakes?
- Does the text follow basic rules of grammar & spelling?
- Is the intent of the information (to inform, teach, sell, persuade, enlighten) clearly stated or implied? (Consider: is it fact or opinion?)
- Are there many advertisements on the page?
- Does the author have a hidden agenda?
- Is the intended audience clearly identifiable?
- Does the page include a "revised" or "updated" date that is current?
- Are the links to other pages or web sites still active?
- Does the site include a list of additional print and electronic sources?
- Are the links relevant and appropriate to the site?
- Is this source too elementary, too technical, too advanced to suit your needs?