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Research Help

The following steps outline an effective research strategy needed to complete an essay, class presentation, or a term paper in most courses at Kwantlen Polytechnic University.

Evaluate Sources

Additional resources:

Rate My Source - University of Wisconsin tool. It will help you evaluate a source.  Based on your answers, Rate My Source will assess whether your source is appropriate for college research. The result is only guidance for you to consider along with your own judgment.

Evaluating the authority, usefulness, and reliability of the information you find is a crucial step in the process of library research. The questions you ask about books, periodical articles, multimedia titles, or Web pages are similar whether you're looking at a citation to the item, a physical item in hand, or an electronic version.Use the CRAAP Test to help you evaluate the information you find for:

Currency - The timeliness of the information.
Relevance - The importance of the information for your needs
Authority - The source of the information
Accuracy - The reliability, truthfulness and correctness of the content.
Purpose - The reason the information exists.

Evaluating Websites - CRAAP Test

Evaluating Web Pages: Questions to Ask & Strategies for Getting the Answers is an excellent guide from UC Berkeley.

What is the site's domain? The following list shows several sites defined by their domain. Generally speaking, .edu, .gov or .org domains are more reliable than .com.
  • .edu - educational institutions
  • .gov - government bodies
  • .org - organizations, non-profit
  • .com - commercial businesses, for-profit
  • .net - organizations related to the Internet itself
Non-reputable websites- This document outlines non-reputable sites often used in students research papers. Find a list of alternative, better quality sites instead.

Finding a credible website test

Activity:

You are looking for a credible / reputable website for your research essay. Which of the following websites would be acceptable?

Pick one of the following
Website 1: 32 votes (19.39%)
Website 2: 15 votes (9.09%)
Website 3: 118 votes (71.52%)
Total Votes: 165