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Evaluating Internet Resources


Consider the following when evaluating information found on Internet sites:

 

Authority:

    • Is the author clearly stated?

    • What are the credentials of the author (academic degrees, affiliations, and/or positions held)?  Is the 
      Internet resource in his or her area of expertise?

    • Is there an organization responsible for providing this Internet resource?

    • What is the reputation of the organization?  What is the organization's mission? Hint: Look for a link 
      that tells you about the organization.  That link is often labeled "About us" or "Our mission" and is usually 
      available on the organization's home- page.  If there is no link to the homepage, reduce the web address 
      until you just have the part that ends in "org," "edu," "com," or "gov" in order to get to the homepage. 
      EXAMPLE:  http://www.fda.gov/importeddrugs/
      REDUCE TO:  http://www.fda.gov/  

Accuracy:

    • Does the Internet resource indicate where the information was obtained?

    • Are facts supported by documented evidence?

    • Is a bibliography included?

    • Does the Internet resource provide relevant links to additional information?

    • Can the information be verified in another source?

    • Is the Internet resource basically free of spelling and grammatical errors?

Purpose:

    • What is the purpose of the Internet resource?

    • Is the purpose of the source to inform?

    • Is the purpose of the source to promote or advertise products?

    • Is the purpose of the source to advocate a point of view?

    • Is the purpose of the source to entertain?

Timeliness:

    • What is the date of publication or the copyright date?

    • When was the Internet resource last updated or modified?

    • Are the links maintained or are they broken?