HOW TO EVALUATE WEBSITES
“In the general World Wide Web, there are no editors (unlike most publications) to proofread and ‘send it back’ or ‘reject it’ until it meets the standards of a publishing house’s reputation. Most pages found in general search engines for the web are self-published or published by businesses small and large with motives to get you to buy something or believe a point of view. Even within a university and library web sites, there can be many pages that the institution does not try to oversee.
The web needs to be free like that!! And you, if you want to use it for serious research, need to cultivate the habit of healthy skepticism, of questioning everything you find with critical thinking.”
ACCURACY: Does your page list the author and institution that published the page and provide a way of contacting them?
AUTHORITY: Does your page list the author’s credentials and is its domain preferred? (.edu, .gov, .org, or .net)
OBJECTIVITY: Does your page provide accurate information with limited advertising, and is it objective in presenting the information?
CURRENCY: Is your page current and updated regularly (as stated on the page), and are the links (if any) also up-to-date?
COVERAGE: Can you view the information properly? (Viewing should not be limited by fees, browser technology, or software requirement.)