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This LibGuide provides you with information for the Welding Technology Program.

Evaluating Internet Sources

When using internet sources for your research, it's important that you keep the following things in mind:

  • Think critically about any information you find online and examine each site carefully.
  • Websites change (accidentally and on purpose), print out or download all the pages you plan to use in your research so that you can ensure that your bibliography is complete and accurate.
  • And remember if you need help, just ask a Librarian!

Domain Names

The website domain is at the end of the website URL and can provide clues about the website publisher.

.com - Commercial business and for-profit organizations; available for purchase by anyone

.edu - Educational institutions; can sometimes include personal faculty and student websites

.gov - United States federal government organization

.mil - United States federal military organizations

.net - Organizations directly involved in Internet operations and those subscribers that publish their own websites

.org - Originally designed for non-profit organizations; typically used for organizations that don't fit other categories

country codes - abbreviation such as ".de" for Germany or ".uk" for the United Kingdom

For more information about evaluating your sources, visit Credo InfoLit Core's Evaluating Information module.

Things to consider:

  1. Is the information presented as fact (vs. opinion)?
  2. If the information is presented as fact, are there footnotes or references to assess the accuracy?
  3. Does the information appear to be biased?

Things to consider:

  1. Is there information about the author/producer/publisher of the source?
  2. Does the information come from an "authoritative" source? What are the credentials?
  3. Is there contact information, such as an email address or physical address for the author/producer/publisher?

Things to consider:

  1. Does the information source cover the topic extensively?
  2. Is the information abridged (summary only)?
  3. Is full-text information available only to subscribers?

Things to consider:

  1. Can you tell when the information was created/published?
  2. Is the information updated regularly?
  3. Is the information still valid for your topic?

Things to consider:

  1. Is the page layout visually pleasing?
  2. Do the images enhance the information or is it spammy?
  3. Are there links provided for additional information?

Things to consider:

  1. If the format/medium of the information useful for your assignment?
  2. Is the information comprehensive enough for your needs?
  3. Is the information directed toward a general or specialized audience?