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Why Evaluate Websites?
Here are some myths about websites and the internet:
"I found it on the internet, so it must be true."
"All websites are professional and of the highest quality."
Believe it or not, a Google search does not always give you reliable, accurate information. Will you eat anything that someone hands you? Probably not! You would want to know what it is made of, is it something you want, and will it be good for you. The same goes for websites; it is up to you to determine whether the sites are reliable with information you need for your purposes.
Printable Check Lists
Download and print one or both of these check lists as a guide in your website evaluation:
Provided by New York Institute of Technology
Provided by Saint Joseph's University
Evaluating Websites/Online Resources
Quick Check List
Don't have time to fill out a worksheet? Here's a quick list of questions to ask yourself before taking information from a site:
- Who wrote the page?
- Is contact information for the author(s) available?
- What is the purpose of the Website?
- Who published the document?
- Check the domain (.edu, .org, .com).
- Does the author list any credentials?
- Determine if any bias exists (i.e. is this an advertisement, or an organization with a motive?)
- What are the goals of the Website?
- When was the Website published?
- Are there any dead links?
- Is the content outdated?
- Are the links relevant to the topic?
- Do you need any special software or a paid subscription to view the information?