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Source Credibility

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Transcript of Source Credibility

What kind of information should we use in an ENG 101 research paper?
CABLE
Source Credibility
Notes
Information sources you choose to
use in a paper are important!
The reader may judge the credibility of your argument based on the sources you use. College instructors expect higher quality sources.
We all use web sites to find info. How do you decide which sites to use in a research paper?
(cc) photo by Metro Centric on Flickr
(cc) photo by jimmyharris on Flickr
Bad Example:
Based on evidence collected by my roommate, three-toed sloths have lived in Minnesota for thousands of years.
(cc) photo by Metro Centric on Flickr
We need to find and use information appropriate for college-level research!
Using information from
questionable sources will lead
the reader to question
your trustworthiness. So...
When in doubt ask a librarian at the reference desk or your course instructor
Currency
When was the site created?
Are links in the site still working?
Do you need current information for your topic?
Authority
Who is the author for the site?
Are the credentials of the author listed?
Look at the domain names. .gov and .edu are more likely to have credible information.
Authorship is important in college-level research. You want to cite experts who have extensive experience in a subject.
Authority is a big problem in Wikipedia. You really can't tell who authored the page.
Use the References section
at the end of a Wikipedia entry to lead you to more authoritative sources like these journal articles.
Bias
What is the purpose of the site?
Are they heavily promoting one side of an argument?
What types of sites are they linking to, random or well-known sites?
This site is against mandated vaccinations. Biased sites aren't necessarily bad, but it is IMPORTANT to inform your reader of a site's bias.
If your course instructor is reading your paper, questionable sources may lead to a lower grade :(
Level
Is the information appropriate for a college-level research paper?
Is the site popular or scholarly in nature?
Popular:
Written for a general audience
Provides general overview
Short, sometimes does not cite sources
Scholarly:
Written for professionals
Provides detailed information based on evidence and research
Lengthy, cites sources
Exploration
Can you find other sources (sites, articles, and books) that support the site’s information?
Do a Google search on the web site or site author. Do other sites use the web site as a credible source of information?
Now it's your turn.
Go back to the library guide and open the CABLE Evaluation Form
http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/idepc/immunize/stats/immreport.pdf
Scholarly Information
Popular Information
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/vaccines/CC00014
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