Part 5 Select

In this section you will

  • Learn how to evaluate information sources for credibility

Where you start your research matters

So far this tutorial has introduced you to some of the information sources and research tools at the Leeward CC Library.  These resources provide the authoritative and reliable information that your instructors expect to see in your papers and research assignments.

Starting with the library's resources will guarantee that you will find valuable and trustworthy information to get you started on the right track.  However, if you are like most students your first stop for research is not the library but the Web.  In fact, a recent Online Computer Library Center study found that 83% of college students turn to a search engine first for their research.1 

The Web does contain good information that you can and should use.  The open nature of the Web means researchers, scholars, and institutions can share valuable knowledge with the wider world easily and at little or no cost.  But this openness comes with a price because less valuable and less reliable information is also readily available and it can be difficult to distinguish what's good from what isn't.

When searching the Web carefully evaluate the information you find there before using it in your research.  Avoid information that is inaccurate, outdated, or misleading. 

So how can you be a better and smarter searcher on the Web?

Learn how to evaluate websites in the following section

1Mantel, Barbara. "Future of Libraries." CQ Researcher 29 July 2011: 625-52. Web. 15 Aug. 2011.

Subpages (2): 5.1 Websites 5.2 Evaluate