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First Year Writing: Evaluating Online Resources

This guide is aimed at students in FYW 150, FYW 115, and FYW 110. It was created as an introduction to conducting research at the university level.

Finding sources on the Web

The Web is a wealth of information, and unfortunately some of it is not good.  If you’re looking for sources on the Internet, such as by searching with Google, be wary of the results you get. It is always a good idea when you’re doing academic research to scrutinize your sources for reliability, authority, objectivity, timeliness, and other important criteria.

If you want to search the Web, try search engines like Google Scholar, which allows you to find resources that are available to you here at USD.

How to evaluate resources:

From the UC Berkeley Library:


From Libraries and Transliteracy:

Crap Detection, A 21st Century Literacy - The CRAP test is a way to evaluate a source based on the following criteria: Currency, Reliability, Authority and Purpose/Point of View.