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POLS 202 Introduction to American Government & Politics: Evaluate Your Sources

This guide will help students research the landscape of current political legislation.

Video: How Library Stuff Works: Information Creation as a Process

Source: "How Library Stuff Works: Information Creation as a Process" by McMaster Libraries, is licensed under a Standard YouTube License.

Learn about how different types of information sources are created and available depending on much time has passed.

Evaluation Criteria

Ask yourself these questions to determine if you have a credible source for your assignment:

☐ WHO is publishing this information? Is it an individual or an organization? Do they have the experience, expertise, education, or qualifications to write about the subject?  Do they hold particular biases?
☐ WHY are they sharing this information?  To inform, to persuade, to entertain, to analyze?
☐ WHAT is the format of the information? Does it go through a review or editing process? How long does it take to get it published, can anyone publish it?

 HOW is this source useful for my arguments?  Does it …

                   ☐ provide a background or history of the issue?
                   ☐ provide a “hook” for my paper – a story, statistics, a quote..etc. that I can use in the Intro section of my paper?
                    ☐ help me understand both the existing arguments and counter arguments?
                    ☐ identify stakeholders in the debate?
                    ☐ analyze real life examples in the debate?

                    ☐ identify the strengths of my argument?
                    ☐ identify weaknesses of my argument?


                    ☐ identify the strengths of the counter argument?
                    ☐ identify weaknesses of the counter argument?