Section 8: Evaluating Sources

In this section you will

  • Learn why you should evaluate your sources

  • Learn how to evaluate your sources

Information quality

Maybe you've heard that junk food is bad for you.  Well, just like with food there is junk information.  Junk information is outdated, inaccurate, or just plain wrong.  It consists of opinions or propaganda disguised as objective facts.  This is the kind of information you need to avoid when doing research because the quality of your paper will depend on the quality of the sources you use.

The Internet enables you to search for and quickly access vast amounts of information.  This includes not only information from high quality, reputable sources but also lesser quality and sometimes questionable sources.  While web searching might be just fine for most of your information needs it is not always the best place to start when the credibility of your sources is crucial.  

Fill up on the good stuff.  Use your library.

The Leeward CC Library provides you with many reliable print and electronic resources.  These resources are carefully evaluated and selected by our librarians from known and respected publishers.  Many of the library's electronic resources such as EBSCOhost and CQ Researcher provide access to good information that you cannot access on the Internet.

Go to to the library's homepage or our Online Research Tools page to see some of the resources we have to offer.  Or come to the library and see any Leeward CC librarian who will be more than happy to answer your questions!

Of course, even when you use the information sources at your library you still need to determine whether a source fits your particular need.  The next page will tell you how to properly evaluate your sources.

Subpages (1): 8.1 Evaluation Criteria