After completing this tutorial a student will know how:
Evaluate the purpose of the source, whether it is intended to provide public forms of evidence for research claims, sell a product, or promote an ideological, political, or religious orientation. The first purpose, providing evidence to be checked by others, is more desirable than those that follow.
Check to see if the author supports knowledge claims with the proper forms of public evidence, both empirical and logical, and if the author cites other research that is relevant to his or her claims. These are perhaps the most important characteristics in determining the reliability of a source.
Check the date of publication, since the timeliness of research is crucial to certain fields, especially medicine and the natural sciences. Timeliness is less important to fields such as literature and philosophy.
Here are some related resources that you can use if you'd like to learn more about this particular topic.
Now it's time to test what you've learned. Click here to test your knowledge. Be sure to print out your score or e-mail it to yourself or your instructor as proof that you have completed this tutorial.