Here is a list of Common Questions you should ask when analyzing any source for research purposes.
Who: Check the Author, Publisher, and/or Sponsor
Who produced the information? What are the author’s credentials? Who maintains/owns the website? Does the webpage have an “About” tab or link?
What: Context of the Information
What is the format of the source? Is the source stylistically consistent (font, spacing, etc.)? Are there numerous sponsored advertisements?
When was the webpage last updated? Does the webpage, book, article have a publication or copyright date? Are the links in the webpage current or broken? Is the information current enough for your topic?
Where: Origin of the Information
Where does the information come from? Does the webpage cite or link to its sources? Are those sources from reliable or reputable authors or institutions? Does the book or article have a works cited page or bibliography? Is the information on the webpage verifiable in other sources?
Who is the intended audience? What is the purpose of the information? Does the information rely upon facts or opinions? Can you determine a possible bias?
*Based on Tips for Evaluating Information by Kayla Hennis and Penelope Adams Moon.
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