Evaluating Web Sites

Ask yourself the following questions before using information from any Web site. 

1. Who produces this site?

  • Is the site produced by a reputable college, university, or other information-providing institution?  The URLs for these types of institutions include the following "domain" codes: 
    • ac (British academic institution) 
    • edu (US educational institution) 
    • gov (governmental body) 
    • org (non-profit organization) 
  • Is the site produced by an individual?  These sites require special scrutiny.  Look for answers to the following questions before using information from these sources. 
    • Are you familiar with the author as a recognized authority in the subject area of the information contained on the page? 
    • If not, does the site contain biographical information and/or credentials about the individual? 
    • Do those credentials tie the individual to reputable institutions? 
  • Sometimes it is difficult to discern who produces a site because the site is several levels into a larger site.  In these situations, try the following: 
    • Locate a "Home" link that will lead you to the main page. 
    • Truncate the URL back to each single forward slash.  For example, would be truncated to to see that the Music Library site is part of the Joyner Library site. 

2. How current is the information contained on this site?

  • Determine the last date on which the site was updated. 
  • Check the bottom of the opening page of the site for an indication of when the site was last updated. 
  • If the site has not been updated within the last six months, be cautious about using information contained on the site.

created by David Hursh, 08-23-99, rev. NN 6-25-07, 5-9-12

Music Library Evaluating Web Sites - ECU

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