Wreford102Affeldt ENG 102Heaton ENG 102
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English Research Guide  

This guide will help you with research in the field of English literature.
Last Updated: Jun 9, 2014 URL: http://libguides.adams.edu/english Print Guide RSS Updates

Affeldt ENG 102 Print Page

Critically Evaluate Your Sources

Content and Purpose

  • What is the source of information about?
  • What is the purpose of the information? Is it to inform, teach, sell, entertain or persuade?
  • Is the information fact, opinion or propaganda?
  • Does the point of view appear objective and impartial?
  • Are there political, ideological, cultural, religious, institutional or personal biases?


  • Who is the author/publisher/sponsor of the information/website?
  • What organizations is the author and/or sponsor affiliated with?
  • What are the author's qualifications to write on the topic?


  • Where does the information come from? Is it supported by evidence?
  • Can the information be verified?
  • Does the language or tone seem unbiased and free of emotion?
  • Are there spelling, grammar or typographical errors?


  • Who is the intended audience?
  • How useful is this source in comparison to other sources available?
  • Would this be a strong source to use in a research paper?


  • When was the content published? Updated?
  • Does the website have working links?
  • Does it matter if the information on the subject is current or not?

Links for Library Instruction Session

Best Bets for Researched Argument Paper

Quick access to Nielsen Library's best databases for issues-based research:

  • CQResearcher
    The Congressional Quarterly Researcher provides in-depth reports on controversial subjects such as gun control, health care, and obesity. The reports include a Pro/Con view, chronology of events, current situation awareness, and lists further resources. An excellent resource for a position paper.
  • Academic Search Complete
    A comprehensive resource covering all academic disciplines, with full text provided for over 4,600 journals. Good for researching any academic topic.

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Best General Bets for all Paper Topics


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