Extended Essay Coordinator
March 1, 2018
FACT There are more than
websites on the World Wide Web!
Finding information: Where to search?
• Google scholar
• University repositories
• Organizational repositories
• Government repositories
What is a
Super simple: A software system
designed to search for information
on the World Wide Web.
Simple: A Website that locates
other Websites that match a word or
phrase that you enter. It creates a
list of hyperlinked results.
Not-so-simple: Search engines are
special websites that have indexed
billions of pages. It searches this
index to find a website that matches
the word or phrase that you are
A metasearch engine will
search many search
engines at once.
instead of getting results
from one search engine,
you'll be getting the best
combined results from a
variety of search
The search engine WILL NOT search the entire web
for a match.
It only searches its own database of information that it
has collected, indexed and stored.
SMART RESEARCHERS …
● Use more than one search engine.
● Use a metasearch engine.
● Cross check and compare results.
How to search?
A Boolean search allows you to
combine keywords with operators
such as AND, NOT and OR to get more
This narrows the search by instructing the
database (or search engine) to only find
sources that have both words.
This broadens the search by instructing the
database (or search engine) to find sources
that include either word, or both words.
This narrows the search by instructing the
database (or search engine) to exclude
Usage of Special Syntax
site: allows you to narrow your search by a site or by a top
level domain e.g. site:edu
link: returns a list of pages that link to the specified URL.
Enter link:www.google.com and you'll get a list of pages that
link to the Google home page.
cached: finds a copy of the page that Google indexed even if
that page is no longer available at its original URL or has
since changed its content completely.
Similar: To find similar information, website or documents.
File type: searches the suffixes or filename extensions
"leading economic indicators" file type:ppt
Phrase search/ Exact search: To search an exact term e.g.
"religion and politics in Saudi Arabia"
How to search?
The use of quotation marks or
brackets (parenthesis) around
phrases will enable you to search for
the exact phrase.
Justify a SCHOLARLY Resource
Formula A B C D E
Bias Content Date Evaluation
-Who wrote this?
-What do you know
-What can you find out
-Can you contact them?
-What is the purpose of
-Does bias make sense
in relation to your
-Is the bias obvious?
-How can you tell?
-Can you use it anyway,
and find something with
a counter bias?
-Is the tone
etc.) appropriate for
-Does this content
-Does it match with
what you already
-Does it link to other
sources and vice-
information up to
make sense in
relation to the
-For this topic,
does it matter?
-What do you
-Should you use
-Why/ why not?
-Do you need any
on to get a
Cross check on
Wikipedia or Snopes.
Do a Google search of
Look at the “about” tab
Read at least 3 related
source and cross check
to understand the
Try Google link
option and see how
many pages linked to
this page. E.g.
Find out the date
on the top/bottom
of the page/article
at least 3 similar
Hoiseth, L. & Hossain, Z. (2018)
Information Evaluation@BE CRITICAL!
Why use the research databases?
Research database Website
Author: Professionals and experts in the field. Author: Can be written by anyone, regardless of
their expertise or knowledge.
Information: Content comes from published
works where the facts are checked.
Information: Content is not always checked by
Referencing: Sources are easy to cite and all
information can be located (i.e. date of
publication, consulted works, author credibility).
Referencing: Websites do not always include
necessary information for citation.
Bibliography: Consulted sources and a
bibliography are included at the end of the
Bibliography: Not all websites include links to
their sources of information or a bibliography.
Organization: The database can help you to
narrow your topic and provide links to similar
Organization: The website may not be
organized. The search engine may not lead you
to the best quality information.
Currency: Research databases are updated
frequently and enable you to list them by date of
Currency: Websites many not indicate when
the information was updated.
Popular VS Scholarly resources
Such as Time or Reader’s Digest Journal of Int’l Education
Articles Often NOT signed by author. ALWAYS signed by the
Audience General public. Targeted audience of scholars
Authors Authors are generalists, staff
writers, or freelance writers.
Authors are experts in their
fields--scholars and professionals,
often university professors.
Citations Sources of information NOT
fully cited, NO bibliography
Sources are always fully cited,
Format Informal, conversational style
to appeal to general readers.
The standard format of the
field is followed: APA, MLA,
Review Policy Articles selected by an editor. "Peer reviewed:" articles
selected by a panel of experts.
Publisher To inform or entertain. To keep scholars and
professionals abreast of new
research findings and
How to find the authenticity of
Use a query containing WHOIS to identify the owner
of a particular website.
Example: https://www.whois.com/whois/ Find the search
box for the registry, and enter [theresearchtl.net].
If you don’t know a company's website, you can search
for the company’s name in Google and locate the web
Consider your source's credibility
Ask these questions:
Have they written several articles on the topic, and do they have credentials to be an expert in their field?
Can you contact them? Do they have social media profiles?
What do you know about the publisher/sponsor? Are they well-respected?
Do they take responsibility for the content? Are they selective about what they publish?
Take a look at their other content. Do they appear credible?
Does the author or the organization have a bias? Does bias make sense in relation to your argument?
Is the purpose of the content to inform, entertain, or to spread an agenda? Is there commercial intent?
When was the source published or updated? Is there a date shown?
Does the publication date make sense in relation to the information presented to your argument?
Is there a bibliography or links to credible sources?
Conversely, have credible sources referenced this source (or author)?
Is the content relevant to your thesis statement?
Is the tone (academic, casual, etc.) appropriate for your project?