and Verifying Resources
When we access or retrieve
something on the World Wide Web we need to be able to decide whether the
information is useful, reliable, or appropriate for our purposes.
is the author or institution?
If the author is a person, does
the resource give biographical information?
If the author is an institution,
is there information provided about it?
Have you seen the author's or
institution's name cited in other sources or bibliographies?
The URL can give clues to the
authority of a source. A tilde ~ in the URL usually indicates that it is
a personal page rather than part of an institutional Web site.
current is the information?
Is there a date on the Web page
that indicates when the page was placed on the Web?
Is it clear when the page was
Is some of the information obviously
Does the page creator mention
how frequently the material is updated
is the audience?
Is the Web page intended for
the general public, scholars, practitioners, children, etc.? Is this clearly
Does the Web page meet the needs
of its stated audience?
the content accurate and objective?
Are there political, ideological,
cultural, religious, or institutional biases?
Is the content intended to be
a brief overview of the information or an in-depth analysis?
If the information is opinion
is this clearly stated?
If there is information copied
from other sources is this acknowledged? Are there footnotes if necessary?
is the purpose of the information?
Is the purpose of the information
to inform, explain, persuade, market a product, or advocate a cause?
Is the purpose clearly stated?
Does the resource fulfill the
Let's take a look at
Look for the name of the author or institution
at the top or bottom of a Web page.
Go to the home page for the site that hosts
the information to find out about the organization.
To find further information about the institution
or author use a search engine to see what related information is available
on the Web.
Use Deja News, http://www.dejanews.com,
or another tool to search archives of Usenet articles to find other information
about the author or institution, and in the case of an individual to see
what sorts of articles they've posted on Usenet.
Check the top and bottom of a Web page for
the date the information was last modified or updated. If no date is present
look at the Document Info if you're using Netscape or the Properties if
you're using Microsoft Internet Explorer.
Teaching: The World Wide Web and a Web Browser.
Some other places you may want to visit
This is a Circle-A Production. Copyright
1997 Ernest Ackermann
Please send comments/questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
FROM the fortune list ...
Passion is in all great searches and is necessary
to all creative endeavors. - W Eugene Smith
visits since April 9, 2001.