Websites and search engines like Google can definitely be useful when it comes to research, but there are several habits to avoid when using these tools:

When searching for sources through a search engine like Google…


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Look deeper and remember to consider results beyond the first thing that pops up on the page.  Sometimes the best sources for your topic might be further down on the results page or on another page.

Don't Cite Wikipedia...

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Unless your professor has specifically mentioned Wikipedia is an appropriate resource for your assignment. It’s best to only use Wikipedia as a tool to gain background knowledge on a topic and you can also use the External links at the bottom of each Wikipedia article to lead you to sources that might be more appropriate for your assignment.

Don’t trust a website…

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Until you’ve reviewed the content and located information on where the info is coming from.  If you can’t find author or organization info, when the website was last updated, or info on a website’s purpose, consider finding a new source where this info is available.


When using facts from a website…

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Make sure to double check the facts! If you can’t easily confirm the information, then rethink where it’s coming from and whether or not it’s a trustworthy source.

 

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