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Kosempel Eng Comp Activities

For Information Literacy Class

Evaluating Sources

When we find a source, we should evaluate it to determine if it is credible, accurate and non-biased.  

It is often helpful to open a second tab when reading a source so that you can search for linked studies referenced in the source.  You can also search to see if there other sources that report the same information.  This is referred to as 'lateral reading' or cross-checking.

Media bias exists. Where do your sources land?

The interactive media bias chart linked below allows you to click a specific publication and see where it falls on the chart, as well as see how particular articles are rated in terms of bias and quality.

General vs. Academic Sources

Skim each article and look at the information about the article that surrounds the text.


For each article, what can you determine about:

     Who wrote the article?

     Who put it out there?

     Who do they want to read it?

How to skim an article

  • Read the title and any additional information below or near the title.
  • Identify the author and anything you can find out about him/her.
  • Determine the "source" - publication or website the article/webpage is from - what do you know or what can you determine about that source?
  • Read the first paragraph or first several sentences.
  • Read the first sentence of paragraphs further on in the article.
  • Read any headings or noticeable quotes or call-outs in the margins.
  • Go to the end of the article and see what information about the author, source, or content is provided.