9. Evaluating Websites

Once you have a list of websites, it's time to evaluate them. Just because a website is at the top of the list, it doesn't mean that it's going to be the best one for your needs. Here are some questions to ask:


Who wrote and/or edited this information? Is s/he a student, an expert,
or someone off the street?


What is this website about?
Is it relevant to your topic? Is the information complete?


How old is the information on this site? When was it updated?
Are there dead (non-working) links?


Where does the information come from? A business? A university? 
Look at the web address to identify the source. 
Here are some of the more popular web address extensions or domains:

  • .edu = higher education (note: websites with a ~ after the edu (like www.washington.edu/~ebianco) indicate a personal website of a staff member or student)
  • .com = business
  • .gov = US government
  • .ca = canadian
  • .org = non-profit organization

Why was this site created? Is its purpose to sell a product, 
promote a point of view, inform?