Websites can have their place in the world of academia, but with countless websites with varying quality and agendas in your search results, it's important to be able to determine whether sites are reliable or appropriate to scholarship or a personal research need.
This takes practice and critical thinking. This guide lists some questions that you should ask yourself before accepting or rejecting a website for its scholarly value. If in doubt about the merits of a website for research purposes, please discuss it with your instructor or a librarian.
Navigate away from the site itself, and see what other sources have to say about the website or organization. Even taking a look at the Wikipedia page can help!
The first few search results aren't always the best or most helpful sources to use, so take some time to scroll through your results--even looking at the second page!--before you pick a few to click on.
For more on fact checking, see the Crash Course videos below, or see our Misinformation guide:
Crash Course's series Navigating Digital Information has a number of great videos explaining different aspects of evaluating information.