No matter where you get information it is important to question the source to determine its credibility and application to your need. When evaluating a source there are six broad criteria you can use for this process.
- On what date was the document created?
- Do you need more current information?
- If applicable, do links on the document still connect to their destination?
- Is a date clearly displayed?
- Can you determine what the date refers to?
- When the document was first written?
- When the document was first posted or published?
- When the document was last revised or updated?
- The copyright date?
- Are the resources used and information provided by the author current?
- Does the document content demand routine or continual updating or revision? If yes, is this being done?
- What position or opinion is presented and does it seem biased?
- What kind of sites does this one link to?
- Determine what is the aim of the author or organization publishing the site.
- What is the purpose of the web site:
- Is it advertisement for a product or service?
- Is it for political purposes?
- Is it trying to sway public opinion on a social issue?
- Do you trust the author or organization providing the information?