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Using Internet Sources...Be Careful!

internet trust--lincoln.jpg
This document was found on the internet.

Why do internet sources pose a special research danger?

Johns Hopkins University answers this question perfectly:

"The World Wide Web offers information and data from all over the world. Because so much information is available, and because that information can appear to be fairly “anonymous”, it is necessary to develop skills to evaluate what you find. When you conduct research in a library, the books, journals and other resources have already been evaluated by scholars, publishers and librarians. Every resource you find has been evaluated in one way or another before you ever see it. When you are using the World Wide Web, none of this applies. There are no filters. Because anyone can write a Web page, documents of the widest range of quality, written by authors of the widest range of authority, are available on an even playing field. Excellent resources reside along side the most dubious. The Internet epitomizes the concept of Caveat lector: Let the reader beware."

The real issue relates relates to the credibility of sources you found on the internet. You must take the time to carefully evaluate information found during those quick Google searches...once you develop these skills, you will be true Google warrior ready to do battle with the almost limitless stream of ideas found on the internet.

How-to Library here.
Includes goals, learning standards, activity process, and instructional materials.

How to evaluate internet resources:
The resources that follow identify how several of America's universities instruct their students in this facet of student research. If you pay attention to their suggestions you will not allow weak source material to darken your citation page.

  • Evaluating Web Content. From University Libraries, University at Albany, SUNY. Gives general tips and tips specific to many popular social media and electronic sites.

  • UTube Video Tutorial Credible Website? created by the Hartness Library serving Vermont Tech and the Community College of Vermont. Good, clear 4:00 minute video outling the process and importance of evaluating the information found through web searching.

  • UTube Video Tutorial from University Libraries, University of Texas at El Paso "Evaluating Web Resources." 5 minutes 47 seconds...anothet thourough overview of the steps involoved in verifying the authority of information taken from websites.

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