Evaluating sources is all about thinking critically not just about the credibility or trustworthiness of the source, but also considering its usefulness to your research need.
Consider this statement: There is no such thing as a good source or bad source. There are only sources that are good or bad for your research.
Use the 5W questions below to help you learn more about a source and decide whether/ how to use it in your research.
The very first question: How do you plan to use this source?
Who is the author of the source?
What type of source is it? (Primary, secondary, journal article, website, etc.)
Where did you find this article?
Also, Where did the funding come from for this article to be written?
When was the source published?
Why was the source written?
Pull it all together: Using your answers to the above questions, do you still plan to use this source?
Source: Kirsten Hansen, "Do you trust this source?" Project CORA lesson plan.
Check out our comprehensive guide on how to evaluate news sources and detect "fake news."