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Databases and eBooks


Evaluating Websites

Part 1: Currency

The timeliness of the information

When was the information published or posted?

Has the information been revised or updated?

Is the information current or out-of date for your topic?

Are the links functional?


Part 2: Relevance

The importance of the information for your needs

Does the information relate to your topic or answer your question?

Who is the intended audience?

Is the information at an appropriate level?

Have you looked at a variety of sources before choosing this one?

Would you be comfortable using this source for a research paper?


Part 3:Authority

The source of the information

Who is the author, publisher, source, and/or sponsor of the site?

Are the author’s credentials or organizational affiliations given? What are they?

What are the author’s qualifications to write on the topic?

What is the domain name for the URL?

Is there contact information, such as a publisher or email address for the author or site administrator?


Part 4: Accuracy

The reliability, truthfulness, and correctness of the content

Where does the information come from?

Is the information supported by evidence?

Has the information been reviewed or refereed?

Can you verify any of the information in another source?

Does the language or tone seem biased or is it free of emotion?

Are there spelling, grammar, or other typographical errors?


Part 5: Purpose

The reason the information exists

What is the purpose of the information?

Do the authors or sponsors of the site make their intentions or purpose clear?

Is the information fact, opinion, or propaganda?

Does the point of view appear objective and impartial?

Are there political, ideological, cultural, religious, institutional, or personal biases?