Website Credibility

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  • 1.  
  • 2.
    • When writing a thesis statement, it is a good idea to
      • Have a solid opinion present, so you can argue it throughout your paper.
      • Make it short and sweet.
      • State “this is my thesis statement” or “this is what I will be talking about.”
  • 3.
    • Make a list
  • 4.
    • Let’s say that you are writing an informative research paper about Percy Shelley, the poet.
    • You search through pages of sites
    • on and find a headline that says,“Percy Shelley was a vampire victim.”
  • 5.
    • You click it
    • Official Looking Logo
    • The Federal Vampire and Zombie Agency .
    • Nice Web Design
    • Sounds interesting
  • 6.
    • “ Percy Bysshe Shelley English Romantic Poet 1792-1822While vacationing in Italy with wife Mary and friend and fellow poet Lord Byron, Shelley decided to pay a call to the vampiric residents of a lakeside castle. The hosts, unimpressed with his reputation, drank his blood then threw him over the castle ramparts into the lake.”
  • 7.
    • What are the author’s credentials?
    • Is the author associated with a university or a recognized organization?
    • Is there a direct link to email the author?
  • 8.
    • Is the site updated often?
    • Is the site out of date?
    • Could there be more up to date information somewhere else?
    • Who is sponsoring the site?
  • 9.
    • Is the site professional looking (frames and a clear text)?
    • Did the author use correct grammar and punctuation?
    • Does the site have links that lead to nowhere?
  • 10. Unbiased
    • Uses credible sources
    • Does not generalize (“All people”) - Has a bibliography/works cited
    • Represents both sides of an issue
    • Provides evidence for opinions
    • (ex. According to a study at Cleveland University)
  • 11.
    • Does not have sources
    • Generalizes
    • Does not have a works cited
    • Only talks about their side
    • Only uses personal opinions.
  • 12.
    • Government websites
    • University websites
    • Recognized organization websites
    • Articles from Scholarly Journals (Info Ohio, EBSCO etc.)
    • Books
    • Anthologies
  • 13.
    • Find another source that says the same information if you are unsure about the credibility.
    • Percy Shelley
  • 14.
    • Personal websites (,
    • Wikipedia
    • Using Encyclopedias only
    • Sites by an unknown org.
    • Sites without the proper publication info.
  • 15.
    • Which published source would you use in your research paper? Circle all that are acceptable.
      • a. A college or university
      • b. An established organization
      • c. A government website
      • d. A personal website where the person states they have a Masters or PhD
      • e. Random websites from
      • f. A book
      • g. A magazine article
      • h. A pamphlet published by an unknown organization
  • 16.
    • Use quotations around your search terms
    • “ Propaganda”
    • To narrow the results, you can use AND, OR, and NOT
    • “ Propaganda” AND “World War II”
    • “ Propaganda” NOT “Revolutionaries”
    • “ Propaganda” OR “Advertising”
  • 17. 100% CRACR
  • 18.
    • Read the two articles and write on a sheet of paper . . .
    • Task 1: Individually
    • What is the writer’s opinion on the topic?
    • What are the main reasons used to support the opinions?
    • Do you think the author did a good job in expressing his/her opinions?
    • Were the reasons convincing?
    • Task 2: In groups
    • Discuss the articles and share with group members your answers to the above questions.
    • Vote as a group on which article you think is the most convincing. What types of sources do the writers use to support the opinions that are presented? Briefly explain why you voted the way you did.
    • Article 1
    • Article 2
  • 19.
    • Cornell University
    • The Federal Vampire and Zombie Agency
    • Percy Shelley’s Biography
    • ACLU Death Penalty
    • Death Penalty ~ Student Paper