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SSC217: Technology & Society (Baumann): Web Resources

Searching the Web

Searching the web takes skills in evaluation and research. Use the suggested credible websites below, or conduct your own research using the evaluation tips at the bottom of the page.


Site Limiting, or limiting your Google search to specific domains, is one of the most powerful things you can do when searching the Internet.

Simply enter your search, then the word "site:" and the domain you'd like to search.  For example:

History of Technology Web Search, Limited to Educational Sites.

Regular Web Search

History of Technology Web Search

Site Limited Web Search

History of Technology Web Search, Limited to Educational Sites

Website Evaluation

While conducting research on the web, it is imperative to evaluate the website in question for authority, documentation, currency, and bias.  Doing so will ensure that you are using the most credible information possible to support your thesis.

Authority and Accuracy

Who produced the site?  Are they a credible source?  What is the purpose of the site?  Why was it created?  Is the person, organization, or group qualified to write this content?  What is the domain of the URL?

  • .com or.biz - a business or commercial website
  • .edu - an educational institution
  • .gov or .mil - a U.S. military or government website
  • .net - a personal website
  • .org - a website for a not-for-profit organization

Documentation

Is there adequate documentation for factual statements?  Is the documentation reliable, verifiable from a second source? Is there enough information to cite this information in a paper (author, title, source, date)?

Currency

Is the information up to date?  When was it created, or last edited?  Are the links up to date or dead?  Is the author using outdated statistics?

Objectivity and Bias

Is the document biased or slanted?  Are there few or no logical errors such as appeal to authority or circular reasoning?  If you found this information a printed source, would you trust it?