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Evaluation Criteria for Sources

Module Four: Evaluate and Select Information

These are general criteria to apply to your sources, and you can also use them in modified form to evaluate webpages. Your professor may ask you to use other criteria in addition to these.

  • Purpose Who is the intended audience for this source? Was this source written to persuade or inform readers? Does the author(s) have ulterior motives?
  • Authority What are the credentials of the author? Is the author a recognized scholar or expert in the subject matter being presented? Is the source from a recognized mainstream publication?
  • Accuracy Are the facts contained in the article correct, as far as you know?
  • Timeliness How old is the source? Is the information current? Is it too old or too new?
  • Adequacy Do you have enough information to support your evidence or argument? What about alternate viewpoints?
  • Objectivity Does the author show any biases or opinions that could be distorting facts?
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