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How Do I Evaluate a Website?

What makes a good website? Why? How can you determine the quality of an information resource on the Web?

Five-Star Evaluation Criteria:

starAccuracy

Information correct, valid
• How reliable is the information?

• Are there obvious errors or omissions? 

• Is it clear who has responsibility for the accuracy of the content?

• Does the document present logical reasoning for assumptions?

• Are original sources referenced? 

• Can you verify references and outside links?
starAuthority  

Author/Publisher credentials, review process
• Who is the author of this page?

• Are the author's qualifications clearly stated?

•  Is the author separate from the "webmaster"?

• Can the author be contacted for clarification?

• What institution published this? Check the domain name.

• Does the publisher list qualifications or outline a review process?

• Are they reputable?

starBias

Purpose of resource, objectivity
• What goals/objectives does this resource meet? 

• Why was this written?

• For whom?

• How detailed is the information?

• What opinions are expressed?

• Is there disclosure of sponsorship?

• What is the context in which the information is provided?

star Currency  

Recent data,  links/content maintained
• Are there dates to indicate:

          • when it was written? 

          • when it was last updated?

• Is it clear when data was gathered?

• How up-to-date are the links?

• Are there other indications that the information is kept current?
starCoverage  

Depth, uniqueness,  scope
• What topics are covered?

• Are they covered in depth?

• Is the resource a work in progress?

• How does this work compare to other works, electronic and print?

• Is the coverage unique?

• Is the information relevant and useful?
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