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Conducting Research Best Practices. What is the difference between the Internet and print sources?

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Presentation on theme: "Conducting Research Best Practices. What is the difference between the Internet and print sources?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Conducting Research Best Practices

2 What is the difference between the Internet and print sources?

3 InternetBooks/text Anyone can publish a Web page No one checks to see if the information is true or false There are millions of places to look for information Using the Internet is much quicker You can narrow down what you’re looking for more easily The Internet uses search engines A book has to be published by a publishing company Editors check and verify the information Looking for a book can be more time consuming You have to visit a library The library uses the Dewey Decimal System Both provide sources of information Both are viewed by millions of people each day

4  Things to consider:  Credibility  Bias  Reliability  Accuracy How to research on the Internet

5  Definition: 1.capable of being believed; believable: a credible statement. 2.worthy of belief or confidence; trustworthy: a credible witness.  Credibility is important!  If your research is flawed, so is your argument.  If you use credible sources, you can believe them, and your readers can believe you. Credibility

6  Most books you find in library that are nonfiction are credible.  Most large newspapers are credible. ◦ New York Times ◦ Charlotte Observer ◦ Washington Post  Scholarly journals are usually credible. ◦ JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association)  Most government publications are credible.  Reputable organizations are usually credible. ◦ American Cancer Society ◦ World Health Organization ◦ American Red Cross  Most information from colleges is credible. ◦.edu websites How do I know if my sources are credible?

7  Wikipedia  Facebook  Tumbler  Geocities  Blogs  Twitter  Personal sites Sites you can rule out:

8  The internet offers the BEST information on MANY topics.  The internet offers the WORST information on MOST topics.  You can use internet resources for research papers, but you have to be careful. You should know:

9  Looks professional  The website doesn’t look like it was made by a 4-year-old with a crayon  All or most links are working  Information offered is easy to verify  The website offers links to where they found their information  The sources of their information is also credible How to pick out a credible source:

10  It is easy to contact the owners of the website for more information or to ask questions  The site is up to date  Information from 1991 is not listed as “recent”  There are no errors  The site uses proper spelling and grammar  The website is appropriate  There is no inappropriate language, graphics, or photos

11  Words and phrases to look for:  About us, Who Am I, FAQs, For More, Company Information, Profiles, Our Staff, Home  E-mail the author  If you have no information other than an e-mail link, write a polite e-mail asking for more information. Credibility Clues:

12 Secondary Source Questions  Currency  How recent is the information?  How recently has the website been updated?  Is it current enough for your topic?  Reliability  What kind of information is included in the resource?  Is content of the resource primarily opinion? Is is balanced?  Does the creator provide references or sources for data or quotations?  Authority  Who is the creator or author?  What are the credentials?  Who is the published or sponsor?  Are they reputable?  What is the publisher’s interest (if any) in this information?  Are there advertisements on the website?  Purpose/Point of View  Is this fact or opinion?  the creator/author trying to sell you something?  Is it biased?

13  These guidelines are not 100%  When in doubt, ask for help from a teacher or librarian  If you’re still not sure, DON’T use it  Be careful sites  sites are trying to sell something, which means they are all biased in some way  Sites with lots of advertisements are usually less credible

14  Most Internet search engines also allow you to use a set of words or symbols to narrow your search.  AND or + – use this word when you want to find two words together. For example “Vasco da Gama AND voyage”  OR – use this when you can accept a couple of words. For example, “Vasco da Gama OR European explorers”  - (minus sign) – use this symbol when you want to exclude a word. For example, “Vasco da Gama -hotel”  “quotations” – use quotation marks when you are searching for an exact phrase. For example, if you were searching for a book title, you could type “The Voyage of Vasco da Gama” in quotations and the search engine will look for that exact phrase. Guidelines for searching:

15  There are dead links or moved pages.  Images don’t support the facts.  The advertisers are not ones that you recognize and aren’t large companies.  No date available or copyright information  the dates are more than 10 years old.  Highly biased information or visuals. The site is probably a bad source if:

16  Site is hosted by a credible provider and trustworthy domain.  Links and references to other websites and sources that corroborate information.  Resource is available in another format.  Site’s authors have other publications with credible publishers.  The site’s authors are experts on the topic.  Is there contact information? Does it work?  Is the site professional? Grammar, spelling, and punctuation are correct. Good Source Characteristics

17  Primary Sources: Literary works (poems, short stories, novels, essays, plays); documents, autobiographies; letters; interviews; speeches; surveys; tables of statistics  Secondary Sources: Comment on or are an analysis of an original text; biographies. Someone else's interpretation of an event. Bias and Credibility

18  Credibility is not an issue  WHY?  Bias, however, may need to be a consideration  WHY? Primary Sources

19  Evaluation of these sources is essential  Credibility of authorship, authenticity, accuracy, and bias may be an issue Secondary Sources

20  Anonymity – no author or sponsoring entity  Negative reviews by other sources  Misspelled words and poor grammar  Vague or sweeping generalizations  One-sided viewpoint that does not address an opposing side Red Flags for Bias

21  Intemperate tone or language ("stupid jerks”)  Over claims ("Thousands of children are murdered every day in the United States.")  Sweeping statements of excessive significance ("This is the most important idea ever conceived!")  Conflict of Interest ("Welcome to the Old Stogie Tobacco Company Home Page. To read our report, 'Cigarettes Make You Live Longer,' click here." or "The products our competitors make are dangerous and bad for your health.")

22  Numbers or statistics presented without an identified source for them  Absence of source documentation when the discussion clearly needs such documentation  You cannot find any other sources that present the same information or acknowledge that the same information exists (lack of corroboration)

23 edu = educational institution gov = US government site org = organization or association com = commercial site museum = museum net = personal or other site http://www.californiahistory.net URLs

24  Your topic is acid rain and its effect on automobile paint. Would you be more likely to find relevant information in: A.A brochure advertising Ford’s newest “Green” models B.A National Geographic article on changing weather patterns C.A study conducted by BMW on exterior paint for cars D.ICAR research on automobile safety in hurricane force wind and rain Choosing a Resource:

25  The correct answer is C because it specifically refers to automobile exterior paint.  All of the other sources listed do not refer to automobile paint. They may deal with rain – but nothing indicates they refer to acid rain. Answer:

26 For a research paper on the history of the sport of lacrosse, which website will be the most relevant and reliable? (home page of the Great Atlantic Lacrosse Company, which sells lacrosse equipment) B. (home page of US Lacrosse, the governing body over men and women’s lacrosse teams in the US) (website of Lacrosse University in Bay St. Louis, MS) D. (website of manufacturer of lacrosse Which resource?

27  The correct answer is B. Option A and D both represent retail companies who sell sporting equipment. Their websites would be unlikely to have much information about the history of the sport. Option C is a link to a university. Option B is a link to an organization that oversees the development and rules of the sport, thus they would be more likely to have information about the history of the sport. Answer:

28     What do these URLs reveal about the site?

29 Rank each of these websites from 1(low) to 4 (high) according to how reliable and accurate you think they would be: 1.The most recent U.S. Department of Labor statistics on unemployment 2.Twelfth-grader’s blog on the history of silent films 3.Wikipedia article about a controversial political issue 4.An editorial about Abraham Lincoln from the New York Times, January 1862 Assess the source:

30 Explain your reasons for ranking each website to a partner. Did you and your partner agree on the rankings? Support your ranking:

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