Primary, Secondary, Tertiary Sources This guide outlines the differences between primary, secondary and tertiary sources of information.
The Tests of Information Quality Reliable Information is Power You may have heard that "knowledge is power," or that information, the raw material of knowledge, is power. But the truth is that only some information is power: Information serves as the basis for beliefs, decisions, choices, and understanding our world.
If we make a decision based on wrong or unreliable information, we do not have power--we have defeat. If we eat something harmful that we believe to be safe, we can become ill; if we avoid something good that we believe to be harmful, we have needlessly restricted the enjoyment of our lives.
The same thing applies to every decision to travel, purchase, or act, and every attempt to understand. Source Evaluation is an Art Source evaluation--the determination of information quality--is something of an art.
That is, there is no single perfect indicator of reliability, truthfulness, or value. Instead, you must make an inference from a collection of clues or indicators, based on the use you plan to make of your source.
If, for example, what you need is a reasoned argument, then a source with a clear, well-argued position can stand on its own, without the need for a prestigious author to support it.
On the other hand, if you need a judgment to support or rebut some position, then that judgment will be strengthened if it comes from a respected source. If you want reliable facts, then using facts from a source that meets certain criteria of quality will help assure the probability that those facts are indeed reliable.
Few sources will meet every criterion in the list, and even those that do may not possess the highest level of quality possible. But if you learn to use the criteria in this list, you will be much more likely to separate the high quality information from the poor quality information.
The CARS Checklist for Information Quality Credibility Because people have always made important decisions based on information, evidence of authenticity and reliability--or credibility, believability--has always been important.
If you read an article saying that the area where you live will experience a major earthquake in the next six months, it is important that you should know whether or not to believe the information.
Some questions you might ask would include, What about this source makes it believable or not? How does this source know this information?
Why should I believe this source over another? As you can see, the key to credibility is the question of trust. There are several tests you can apply to a source to help you judge how credible and useful it will be: Here are some clues: Mere fame is not an indicator of credibility.
Evidence of Quality Control Most scholarly journal articles pass through a peer review process, whereby several readers must examine and approve content before it is published. Statements issued in the name of an organization have almost always been seen and approved by several people.
But note the difference between, "Allan Thornton, employee of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Agency, says that a new ice age is near," and "The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Agency said today that a new ice age is near. Evidence of quality control of Internet material includes these items: Information presented on organizational web sites On-line journals that use refereeing peer review by editors or others Postings of information taken from books or journals that have a quality control process Note: Appearances can be deceiving.
Very professional and sophisticated Web page templates are available for a few dollars, so that anyone and his pet skunk can put up a site that looks expensive and authoritative.When writing a paper, you can stuck at something: Is the topic not clear to you?
Is it too broad or too narrow? Are there not enough reliable sources? Virginia Montecino [email protected] © Virginia Montecino Jan You may use this assignment if you attribute the source and include the URL. Professional custom writing service offers custom essays, term papers, research papers, thesis papers, reports, reviews, speeches and dissertations of superior quality written from scratch by highly qualified academic writers.
Material such as an article, book, monograph, or research paper that has been vetted by the scholarly community is regarded as reliable, where the material has been published in reputable peer-reviewed sources or by well-regarded academic presses. The Purdue Online Writing Lab Welcome to the Purdue OWL.
We offer free resources including Writing and Teaching Writing, Research, Grammar and Mechanics, Style Guides, ESL (English as a Second Language), and Job Search and Professional Writing. Another reason why Wikipedia should not be cited in an academic research paper is that it aims to be like an encyclopedia–a source of reference information, not .