Sometimes you may need to use websites as sources. Potential uses for websites include:
Evaluating a website is similar to evaluating a journal article, but the information may not be as easily accessible and may require an extra critical eye.
Ask yourself ...
A professionally designed website does not guarantee the accuracy of its information, but it generally indicates someone has put some effort into the content and its maintenance. A few things to ask yourself:
When was the page produced and/or last revised? Is the linked information also up-to-date? If it's not apparent when the information was posted or updated, it's best to move on.
Is the web page relevant to your current project? If it's useful, it will
Very important: Can you clearly identify the author, and is he or she considered an authoritative source in this subject area?
To what type of reader is the web site directed? This will dictate the quality of the content. Is the content level appropriate for your needs?
Ask yourself, is the site for:
Who is authoring and maintaining this website? How does this affect its purpose and content? Look for Mission Statements, About Us, and FAQs to learn more. If a site does not make it obvious who is behind it, move on to another source.
Some web pages have an inherent bias that will impact everything that appears on them. Is the author:
Another method of evaluating websites (and other sources) is the CRAAP test. This stands for CURRENCY, RELEVANCY, AUTHORITY, ACCURACY, and PURPOSE. It's simply a group of questions you should ask yourself when evaluating a resource.
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