Below are some questions that you can use to assess the credibility and usefulness of sources within the context you plan on using them:
Who is the author?
- Is the author an expert within the field?
- Is there a recognized authority or organization that provides the information?
- Who is the provider of the information? Look for example at the URL.
- Is there contact information?
What does the material contain?
- Does the source contain the information you are looking for?
- Are the facts correct and the text written in an objective manner?
- To what extent does the source cover the subject? How detailed is the subject described?
- Is it a scholarly (scientific), trade/professional, popular or other kind of text?
- Are there references to other sources? What kind of sources?
Who is the target group?
- Is it researchers, the general public, students or another defined group?
- In what way is the material relevant to your needs?
When was the material written?
- When was the material published?
- Is the material sufficiently current for your needs?
Why was the material published?
- Does the author want to present research, inform, persuade, sell or entertain?