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Evaluating Your Resources To Answer Your Research Question


Accuracy refers to truthfulness, correctness and generally the level of quality of any matrial.There are several questions that you will need to answer before you determine a sources’ credibility.

  1. Is the information from the source well organized, logical, and supported by evidence?
  2. Is the information pre-reviewed or edited
  3. Is the information free of any errors like spelling, content or grammar?
  4. Does the website appear professional in appearance?
  5. If all the answers to the questions above are yes, then the source is credible.


When referring to authority, we have the author or source of information in mind. In order to determine the credibility of the source, you must be in a position to answer the following questions.

Whose source is it? Precisely, who has written the work? What are the credential accompanying his authorship? Is the author affiliated to any company or organization? Which is the sponsoring organization or publisher? In case it’s a url, ask yourself what the url reveals about the sources.

You will be required to verify all sources in your work and keep in mind that no professor will accept Wikipedia as the authoritative source of your data.

Purpose and Objectivity

Purpose implies the reason for which authors produce their work whilst objectivity on the other hand refers to straight presentations of information minus prejudice instances. In order to find out the author’s objective and purpose, answer the following questions:

What goals and intentions did the author have in mind to produce the work? What is it that is being offered for sell? What does the information contain? Are there facts in the source or mere opinions? Is the owner of the source upfront in stating affiliations of relevance? Are the opinions or arguments in the paper justifiable, addressed and/or recognized?

What are the author or producer's goals and intentions? What are you being sold?

What is the author’s approach to his/her views? Are they balanced and fair? Whilst working with sources that have strong arguments and opinions bear in mind that the writer is acknowledged.


Coverage and corroboration mean the consistency and thoroughness of the source. In order to determine this, find lists of references in the source. Excellently try as much as possible to understand the works coverage and locate other sources of reference for your research.


Currency means the time when the information was created. Different topics vary in currency; some are current while others were probably produced ages ago. Depending on your topics like the medical field, you will need to make use of recent published works.


Relevance also helps in determining the credibility of your sources by gauging the degree to which the sources help meet your needs. Remember that all the sources that you may choose, they should be relevant in addressing the topic in question.

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Writing Advice

Make sure you always follow the specific finalizing instructions from your teacher, because they will be marking your research paper and looking for those things.

Don’t rely completely on your word processor’s spell check, because it won’t catch everything. Print your research paper if you can, and give it a good old fashioned proofread.

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