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The Ellen Clarke Bertrand Library

RESC 098 05: The Globalization Debate


Describe ways in which you critically evaluate sources of information such as articles, data, etc.  How do you determine whether or not they are credible?

Recommended databases

Types of sources

Scholarly or peer-reviewed journal articles are written by scholars or professionals who are experts in their fields. In the sciences and social sciences, they may include research results. Scholarly journals cite their sources through footnotes or bibliographies. (e.g. American Economic Review, Journal of Marriage & the Family)  Tip - Search an article database (e.g.JSTOR, Research Library) and then limit the search to scholarly, peer-reviewed materials. 

Substantive news articles are reliable sources of information about events and issues of public concern. News and general interest periodicals may cite sources, though more often do not. Articles may be written by a member of the editorial staff, a scholar or a freelance writer. Substantive news sources are accountable for the accuracy of their reporting and they adhere to journalistic standards. (e.g. Scientific American, New York Times)  Tip - Search a news database (e.g. Historical Newspapers, US Newsstream) and use date limits that correspond with your needs.

Popular articles reflect the tastes of the general public and are often intended to entertain, promote a viewpoint, or to sell a product.  Publications of this type do not cite sources in a bibliography. (e.g. Sports Illustrated, People)

Sensational tabloid articles are intended to arouse strong interest or reaction. They do not follow the standards of journalistic ethics, and are not factually accurate. They use flashy headlines designed to astonish or by falsely reporting on events. (e.g. National Enquirer, Globe)

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