Choosing articles or books for a research project? Your professor will expect you to justify your choices. Be prepared to answer the following about each item.
Currency: Is the information recent enough for your topic/field of research? Does recent matter?
Was this published within an appropriate number of years or around the time of an original event?
Relevancy: Does the information apply to your topic?
Is it a primary or secondary source?
How much of the information applies to your topic?
Is the information general or detailed, balanced or biased?
Authority: Who authored this information? Are they a trustworthy source of information?
Was it a single person or several people?
Was it a corporation or organization?
Are their credentials provided?
Are methods/references provided?
Was this peer-reviewed?
What is the domain? (Many Internet sources are not reviewed before being posted; however, government, educational, and organizational sites often have some sort of review process. If no review process is stated or evident, you may assume there is none.)
Accuracy: Is the information still factually correct?
Are there any errors in the information?
Does the site employ fact-checking for the website?
Purpose: Why was this written?
Who is the intended audience?
Is the information intended to inform, persuade, sell, entertain?
Is this a first-hand account of an event or research?
Does the author have a vested interest in the topic?