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Website Evaluation Criteria
can have a web page. So some information on the Web is biased,
just plain wrong. You will need to evaluate web sites for accuracy,
authority, currency, objectivity, and purpose. Here is a checklist you
- Does the author cite reliable sources
for his or her facts?
- How does the information compare with
that in other works written about this topic?
- Who do you think the author/s of the
web site are trying to reach?
- Is there a particular group or segment
of society that the author/s are targeting?
- What are the author's qualifications
for writing on this subject?
- Is he or she connected with an
organization that has an established reputation?
- Does the web site include a
publication date or "last updated" date?
- Is the author affiliated with a
particular organization that might have a bias?
- Is the author's purpose to inform,
e.g. provide new information, current events, etc?
- Is the author's purpose to explain,
e.g. describe a process, teach, etc?
- Is the author's purpose to persuade,
e.g. change your mind, convince you to buy, etc?
Other Political Science Databases
Digital National Security Archive
Declassified primary documents regarding critical U.S. policy decisions since 1945. Currently there are 50 collections, each with a particular focus on a world event, country, or U.S. policy decision, including the Cuban Missile Crisis, U.S. espionage, the Iran-Contra Affair, the Vietnam War, the Persian Gulf War.
Economist Historical Archive
Provides fully-searchable, cover to cover access of The Economist from 1843 to fifteen years ago. Also includes The Economist's supplements, Special Reports, and Surveys.
The ability to cross-search multiple primary source collections from the provider Gale is now available on the Gale Primary Sources
National Historical Geographic Information System (previously Historical Census Browser)
Provides access to summary tables and time series of population, housing, agriculture, and economic data, along with GIS-compatible boundary files, for years from 1790 through the present and for all levels of U.S. census geography, including states, counties, tracts, and blocks. (Our access to this data was previously through the Historical Census Browser from the University of Virginia Library, which is no longer supporting this tool.)
Note:You must create a free username and password for access to summary tables, time series, and GIS-compatible boundary files.
U.S. Declassified Documents Online
Provides access to more than 750,000 pages of government documents covering major policy issues from the period before the Second World War into the twenty first century, the archive serves as a convenient source for documents from government departments including Defense; State; Treasury; CIA; and the White House. USDDO supports the study of history, politics, international relations, and journalism, among other fields.