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Library Resources for W100 (Tom O'Neal): Thinking about Information

Gus Grenadier wants to know!

If Gus Grenadier were to walk into our classroom right now and ask us the following question, what would we tell him, and what sources would we use to answer his questions?


Gus says:

"I want to know more about how to find reputable, credible sources to on my research topic.  Do I just do a Google search or what? And what makes a source credible anyway?"


Where would you start if you were to try to answer Gus's question? In pairs, discuss your responses to Gus's questions--1) how to find credible sources with information about your research topic, and 2) what makes a source credible. Be prepared to share your responses with the class!

Thinking about Information

This exercise is designed to help you develop the ability to:

1. Define information need and amount of information needed

2. Identify type of information contained in a source and recognize purpose of type of information

3. Identify the value of potential resources in a variety of formats  

Information Sources

 Review the information sources linked below and answer the following questions:

  • What type of information source is this?  Is it news, scholarly, professional, opinion, etc.?
  • Why was this source published?  What is its purpose?  Who is its audience?
  • How were you able to make the above determinations?  What specific aspects of these information sources did you look at, analyze, read, think about, etc.?  In other words, what are the clues that help you make evaluations about these information sources?

1. Bowers, Jeffrey S. and Christopher W. Pleydell-Pearce. "Swearing, Euphemisms, and Linguistic Relativity" in PLoS One

2.  National Coalition against Censorship.  What’s All This About Trigger Warnings?

3. Volokh, Eugene. "University of Chicago tells freshmen: Don’t expect ‘trigger warnings,’ ‘safe spaces’ or disinvitations of controversial speakers." in The Washington Post

4. Waldman, Katy. "The Trapdoor of Trigger Words" in Slate

Subject Guide