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Subject Guides

International Pathway College

Evaluate what you have found

Evaluation and Critical Thinking

It is important not just to find information, but also to choose the right resources for your work and think about them critically. Below are some questions to help you decide whether a resource is right fo you and how best to use it, as well as links to our skills hiodes, to help you develop your academic evaluation skills. 

Who?

What should you look out for?

Who are the authors? Individuals? Experts? Companies?

Who published it?

Why is this important?

Look out for bias and opinion pieces. Is the information covered fact, opinion or propaganda?

When?

What should you look out for?

When was it published? Recent? Dated?

Why is this important?

Consider whether the publication is out-of-date for your own research needs.

How?

What should you look out for?

How was the research conducted?

Is it representative?

How can you use it to answer your need?

Why is this important?

If it’s a piece of research, how did they conduct it? Were the method and sample size appropriate and representative?

Will it support points you are making?

What?

What should you look out for?

What is the information?

Is it useful to your project?

Why is this important?

It needs to relate to your question – try to keep a focus on the question not just the general topic.

Where?

What should you look out for?

Where did you find the information: website, blog, book, journal or database?

Where was the research conducted?

Why is this important?

Always try to get your information from reputable sources e.g. textbooks, journals. Research conduced in other countries may not be relevant.

Why?

What should you look out for?

Why was it written?

What are the motivations behind it?

Why is this important?

Look out for bias – see also ‘Who?’

Develop your Evaluation Skills

Use our study guides to develop your critical skills.