When looking at resources that you find on the web, make sure you evaluate them to verify that they are credible.
Why you should evaluate web pages:
In addition to the information below, here is a Web Evaluation Criteria Checklist.
Look at this page about Dihydrogen Monoxide. It looks official and it warns about the “dangers” of a substance they refer to as Dihydrogen Monoxide, or DHMO. As you may know, “Dihydrogen Monoxide” is water (H20)! It was presented as a scary chemical, but water is essential for life.
Before you decide if a website is factual, do a little fact checking on your own. Always get a second opinion!
It is useful to identify the type of page that you have found because you would apply different criteria to each type of page.
For example, a commercial page may contain good information, but knowing that the goal of the page is to sell you a product should make you aware that the information may be biased.
Types of web pages include: commercial, personal, academic, advocacy, association or professional.
URL’s are often a good indication of the origin of the page. The domain name is found after “http://” and “www.” Check the URL to see the domain name extension.
These are some common domain name extensions:
It is often difficult to identify the author of a website, but knowing who wrote the page is important because it tells you about the quality of the information you will find.
As you look at the page, ask the following questions:
Is there a date given on the website? Does this indicate when the site was first placed online (which could indicate the information is dated) or when it was last updated (which indicates the information is maintained)? No dates or an old date could indicate that the site is abandoned and the information stale.
Make sure that the WEB is where you should be looking. Ask yourself: