Choosing
Research Resources

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  1. First Things
  2. What is Research?
  3. Start on the Web?
  4. Encyclopedias
  5. Books
  6. Magazines & Journals
  7. Audio-Visual
  8. Web Resources
  9. Review
  10. Quiz
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Created by Reference &
Automation Services Librarians
,
for Del Mar College Library.
Last revised 2/8/06

 

    Choosing Research Resources

    Web Resources

    • Web resources in this context refers to information that is freely available on the internet.

    • Web resources should be used cautiously.

      • While some sites on the web are highly authenticated and accurate many are not.

        • There is no person, institution or agency that makes sure information on the web is correct.

        • There is no person, institution or agency that controls what's put on the web.

        • Information on the web may be wrong because...

          • the information is faulty

          • the information was based on outdated sources

          • incorrect information was posted on purpose

          • its part of a satire or hoax site that is made to look genuine

    • To try to tell authenticated and accurate sites from inaccurate sites try some of these steps..

      • Make sure the site lists a title and an author.

      • Check to see when the site was last updated.

      • Make sure the web address or "URL" (uniform resource locator) and the name of the site seem to go together.

        • For instance, if the site looks like its for a Fortune 500 company but the URL is from an angelfire.com or other free web hosting site, it's probably not genuine.

      • URL's with tildes ~ tend to be personal sites on company or institutional websites and may be suspect.

      • Look for information from reputable resources, such as professional organizations, governments, educational instutions, and so on.

        • Federal, state and local governement websites often have URLs that end in .gov
        • Non-profit organizations often have websites with URLs that end in .org
        • College and university websites often have URLs that end in .edu
        • Sites from countries other than the US often end in a two-character code, such as .ca identifies a Canadian website.
        • These are guidelines. Use this in conjuction with other identifiers to verify that a website is legitimate.
    • Use the library's Websites by Subject list or Search Engines list as a place to start your web search.

    • When A Search Engine Isn't Enough, Call A Librarian [NY Times newspaper article]