Contemporary Canadian Government & Politics:
A Practical Research Guide

Introduction   Starting   Clarifying   Bibliographies   Finding & Evaluating
Primary Sources   Special Topics   Citing Sources   Ask Your Librarian!   Detailed Table of Contents
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4. Finding and Evaluating Substantive Information
Finding Information Evaluating Information

Evaluating Information:

Books Articles Internet Sites Authors Writing Annotations/Reviews

Whenever you receive information, for whatever purpose, you should be evaluating its reliability before you believe it, use it, or repeat it. The need to evaluate information sources is more obvious when you have a project due in a short time and you are faced with hundreds or thousands of books, articles, and other potential sources of information. You cannot possibly read them all, so in the process of selecting information sources for your research project you need to evaluate which will be the best.

There are many ways to evaluate information. The more experienced the researcher is in a field, the easier it will be to make evaluative judgments about information and to decide whether it is suitable for use in your research project. For students and researchers new to the field of Canadian politics and government this process is more difficult. One way to start can be to use only sources recommended by experts: books on reading lists, in selective, evaluative bibliographies, or in the recommended reading lists of textbooks and subject guides. However, most research topics will require branching out further. Link to the following for some of the tools and techniques you can use to help you evaluate information and sources of information:

Evaluating Books Articles Internet Sites Authors Writing Annotations/Reviews
Finding Information Evaluating Information
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Introduction   Starting   Clarifying   Bibliographies   Finding & Evaluating
Primary Sources   Special Topics   Citing Sources   Ask Your Librarian!   Detailed Table of Contents

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