Evaluating Web Sites

Criterion One: Credentials

  • Authors can be one person, several people, or an organization (sponsor) that are responsible for the page.
  • Authors are qualified if their credentials match the subject of the site in terms of education or professional experiences.
  • An author's credentials can be determined by the subject of the articles they have written as a professional journalist, their experience teaching at the college level, their research experience as a scientist.
  • A sponsoring organization should be run by professionals or scholars in the subject of your web page's primary content.
  • The "About Us" page usually appears in the homepage header or footer and often contains a history or mission statement for the sponsor.

Quiz #1:
You found a web page written by a college student. Is he or she a qualified author for the subject?


Criterion Two: Impact of Domain on Content

A domain designates a type of Web site.

Domain Types Examples
com commercial amazon.com (online store)
edu educational institution nwmissouri.edu
gov governmental agency census.gov (US Census Bureau)
mil branch of the military navy.mil (US Navy)
net network (Private Internet Service) fairtrade.net (Fairtrade International)
org organization cancer.org (American Cancer Society)

Criterion Three: Contact Information

  • Contact information, such as phone number and mailing address, is another indication of credibility that helps readers to verify author’s legitimacy.
  • A mailing address or phone number can be used to contact the author or sponsor.
  • Contact information is typically available on the homepage of the site or the "About" or "Contact" page
Quiz #2
You found an interesting blog article written by Cat Man. There is no other information about this author. Can you use it for your paper?
Last Update: 30 Mar 18:46