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Library Research at Cornell: Evaluate
Sources

A stepwise guide to efficient research using the Cornell University Library. Click on the BLUE TABS below to access each section.

How to Evaluate the Information Sources You Find

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 on a computer.

ALL SOURCES:

Critically Analyzing Information Sources lists some of the questions you should ask when you consider the appropriateness of a particular book, article, media resource, or Web site for your research.
 

EVALUATING BOOKS:

Use book reviews to gather critical information about books. Three quick ways to access them online [Cornell users only]:

More sources for book reviews --> Book Reviews: A Finding Guide.

 

EVALUATING PERIODICALS:

Distinguishing Scholarly from Other Periodicals shows how to evaluate periodicals by looking at their format, intended audience, and appearance.
 
 
Magazines for Libraries. Cheryl LaGuardia, editor. 26th ed. New York: Bowker, 2018.
(Olin Reference Z 6941 .K21 +; shelved behind the Olin reference desk)
Evaluations of journals, magazines, and newspapers. Earlier editions in the uris Library stacks.
 

EVALUATING DATA SOURCES:

"Become Data Literate in 3 Simple Steps" shows how to evaluate the numbers used in articles, books, and the media.
  Source: Understanding Data, part of The Data Journalism Handbook, Version 1.0 beta online.


EVALUATING WEB SITES:

Reference Help

Michael Engle's picture
Michael Engle
106 Olin Library
moe1@cornell.edu
Cornell University Library

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