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Research and the Library: Using Resources WISely

This tutorial and module will guide you through the process of library research.

Module 4: Authority

Now that you can locate library resources for your topic, it’s time to decide which ones will be the most useful for you research.  As you have already noticed from looking at your search results, some sources seem to be more credible, or have more Authority, than others.  The type of sources you use will depend on the requirements for the paper or presentation.  For most research papers, you may need scholarly sources; however, popular and/or web resources may work better for opinion papers, current events, and other assignments.  In addition to where it was published, looking at who produced it and why gives us clues about its authority and credibility.

First, read the learning outcomes below. When you are ready, click the "NEXT" button on the bottom to begin the module.

A. Scholarly v. Popular
B. Evaluating Sources & Fake News
C. Google v. Google Scholar v. Library Databases

D. Test Yourself

Learning Outcomes

In this module, you will:

  • Distinguish between scholarly and popular resources and understand the peer review process.
  • Evaluate sources for authority and credibility.
  • Identify the best search option for your research assignment.
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