Thursday, December 12, 2013

Remember the Library over Christmas Break

If you are looking for something to fill your Christmas break, remember the library! 

The library is giving away candy to students that check out book between now and break. Checked out books will also receive an extended due date so you can enjoy them all break long. Faculty are welcome (and encouraged) to participate!

If you already have a book checked out from the library, please make sure to return or renew it before Christmas break. Fines will not be waived that accrue over break. 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Research Tips: Website Evaluation

Nowadays, most research is done online. As the previous research tips blog mentioned, there is a large amount of digital information available so it's important for you to be able to efficiently shift through it. The best way to evaluate online information is by having a method. The method we will be discussing today is called the CRAP Method.

Purpose/Point of View

Here are some good questions to ask yourself when you are looking through websites. If you can't answer the majority of these questions, you want to rethink using that specific website as a reliable and creditable source in your research!

1. When was the page/article written or updated? [If no date is given on the page, visit the homepage to look for the date.]

2. Is the information current enough for your topic? Why this may matter for your topic?

3. What kind of information is included in the resource?
Think about the main topics or ideas.

4. Is content of the resource primarily opinion or fact?  Is it biased?  
How can you tell?

5. Are there references given for the information on the site?  Where are they? [Look for a bibliography or any list of materials used in the creation of the page.]

6. If there are links, do they work?  [Try them!]

7. Are there spelling, grammar, or other typos? What does this say about the reliability of the website?

8. Who is the creator or author?  If there is no specific author, what is the name of the organization responsible for the site?  [You may need to visit the homepage to find the answer.]

9. Can you locate the credentials and contact information for the creator or author?
Purpose/Point of View
10. What is the intent of the website (to persuade, to sell, to inform, etc.)? [How can you tell?]