Information Literacy and Digital Citizenship

Be a Good Digital Citizen!

Teen Pledge for Being Smart and Safe Online

  1. I will be respectful to myself and others. I won’t bully and won’t tolerate bullying by others.
  2. I will be a good online friend and be supportive of my friends and others who might be in trouble or in need of help.
  3. I won’t post or send pictures or other content that will embarrass me, get me into trouble or jeopardize my privacy or security.
  4. I will respect other people’s privacy and be courteous when posting photos or other content about them.
  5. I’ll be conscious of how much time I spend on the web, phone and other devices and won’t let use interfere with sleep, school work and face-to-face relationships.
  6. If they need my help, I’ll assist my parents, teachers others in their use of technology.
  7. I will respect other people’s digital property and space. I won’t steal, hack, break into anyone else’s accounts or use other’s content without permission.
  8. I will protect my passwords and practice good Net security.
  9. I will be thoughtful in my use of copy, paste, and forwarding. If I use anyone else’s content or images, I will quote them, give them credit, and link to them if appropriate.
  10. I will help create a culture of respect and tolerance at my school and among my peers.

From at:

Be a Smart Digital Citizen!

You can't trust everything you read!

Anyone can post on the Internet.

Be sure to use the right source!

Tips for Effective Search Strategies:

Boolean Operators (AND, OR, NOT)

Quotation Marks (" ___ ")

Truncation (Asterisk*)

The First Hit Isn’t Always (or even usually) the Best!

Criteria for Evaluating Online Resources

To find VALID (trustworthy, fact-based, reliable) information,

check your Website for these 5 things:

1. Authority: Who says? How would they know? Who is the author of this Website? Is it an expert or a reputable company that employs experts?

2. Reliability: Is any information that you already know accurate? Is there a bibliography or references to trustworthy sources?

3. Objectivity: Is the information objective (fair, balanced, and fact-based) or biased (prejudiced/slanted to make you believe the author’s own opinions)? Who is sponsoring the Website? Could who the sponsor is have an effect on what is presented on the Website? What is the purpose/motive of the Website/article creator? (to inform? to instruct? to persuade? to sell you something?)

4. Currency (Timeliness): Is this information current? When was the site or page created? When was the last time the page was updated? How current are the links? (Broken links usually mean that the site is not regularly updated.) Does currency matter with your particular topic? (Ex: It may not matter much if you are reading an article about Ancient Greece, but it matters a lot if you are reading an article on Mars.)

5. Relevance: Is the information helpful and useful for completing your assignment or fulfilling your purpose? Does it fit your Essential Research Question or your information needs? Is it written at a reading level that you can understand? Is it presented in a way that suits your learning style and needs so that it will give you a clear understanding of the topic? All facts are not created equal! Just because it is a fact about your topic doesn’t mean that it fits your assignment or your needs!

The First Thing You Should Do to Check If a Website is Valid:

Click on the "About Us" section of the Website!

  • This section is usually located at the very bottom (or sometimes along the top or side) of the page. Reliable publishers should have an "About Us" section. Read up on the author or publisher and make sure that this is a legitimate source of information written and/or published by experts. For example, and article about burns should be written by a doctor or scientist.
  • If you can't find an "About Us" section, be suspicious. Google the name of the author and/or publisher to check up on them.
  • If you still aren't sure, check with Ms. Quinlivan or one of your teachers. If you use a Website that is not reliable and use incorrect information, you are entirely responsible because you didn't check to make sure it was reliable. You will end up losing a lot of points, so please check out your sources before you use them!