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How to Evaluate Resources: Home

A guide to evaluating search engines, books, articles and websites for research.

Learning to Think

The Basics of Resource Evaluation

An important component of research is knowing how to evaluate the resources you've found.  The aim of this guide is to give you the tools to determine if your resources are the right ones for your research.  With every type of resource you use, whether it be a search engine, book, article or website, there are five main criteria to keep in mind:


1. Authority

Who is the author and/or publisher?

2. Accuracy

How reliable is the information provided?

3. Objectivity

What is the purpose of the resource?

4. Currency

How up-to-date is the resource?

5. Coverage

Does the resource contain information relevant to your topic?


This guide will look at four types of resources - search engines/databases, books, articles and websites - and discuss the special considerations that need to be made in evaluating each of them.

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Jennifer Hall
Dr. John Archer Library
3737 Wascana Parkway
Regina, SK S4S 2A0

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How to Evaluate Sources in 5 Minutes