Evaluate Web Sites
This grid provides criteria to evaluate a web site to distinguish between reliable and unreliable information on the web.
Because anyone can publish on the Web, it is important to be able to distinguish between reliable and unreliable web sites. Consider all of the following criteria when evaluating a web site.
|| Who wrote it?
What are their qualifications?
Are they experts?
Who published/hosted it?
Is the publisher/host reputable?
|| Why was this site created?
Is this fact or opinion?
Is it biased?
|| Is this true?
Can you tell where they got their information?
Can you find this information elsewhere?
|| When was this information published or last updated?
Is it current enough for your research?
- The author and publisher/host may be the same. For example, if you don’t see an author’s name on an organization’s website, then the organization is both the author and the publisher.
- You may not find all of your answers on the web page provided. You may have to look at other pages on the web site (look for an “about” link, for example) or search the web for more information about the person or organization that created the web site.
- Weigh all four criteria when making your decision. For example, the information may appear accurate, but if the authority is suspect you may want to find a more authoritative site for your information.