Evaluating Sources: Web Sites

What makes books, articles, and other sources useful and how to evaluate them.
Need Help?

Ask us!

Evaluating Web Sites

The Web has little quality control and critical evaluation of internet sites is crucial. Some criteria to use when examining a Web site are:


  • Is the document author or site sponsor clearly identified?
  • Does the site provide contact information for the author or sponsor?

Objectivity or clear disclosure of advocacy

  • Is the site's purpose clear (for example, to inform, entertain or persuade)
  • Is the site explicit about declaring its point of view?
  • Does the site indicate whether it is directed toward a specific audience?


  • Are the topics covered by the site clear?
  • Does the site exhibit a suitable depth and comprehensiveness for its purpose?
  • Is sufficient evidence provides to support the ideas and options presented?


  • Are the sources of information stated?
  • Do the facts appear to be accurate?
  • Can you verify this information by comparing this source with other sources in the field?


  • Are the dates included in the website?
  • Is the information current, or at least still relevant for the site's purpose? For you purpose?


Criteria list taken in whole from:
Ramage, Bean and Johnson. The Allyn and Becon Guide to Writing. 5th Ed. Customized for Marquette University. Boston: Pearson Education, Inc., 2009. Print.