Skip to Main Content

ENGL 1213 Composition 2

Research & rhetoric for more advanced expository essays.

Session 1: Evaluating Sources

Evaluating Your Sources

When your class visits the library for the first time, we’ll discuss how to find peer-reviewed sources and how to evaluate information on the internet for reliability.

Follow along with the presentation and then complete the following activities.

In-Class Presentation


  1. Using the following article as a starting point, find three peer-reviewed sources to which the article refers:

    Since this is a popular article, you may have to get creative to find its sources.

    Remember these tips:

    • Pick out keywords that likely came from the original source.

    • Try multiple search tools, but only use regular search engines as a last resort; try our databases and Google Scholar.

    • Brainstorm with your group members on research strategies

  2. With the worksheet on your table, use the Spider method to produce an evaluation of the following two websites:

    Does either site appear to be reliable? Why or why not? Would you use either as a source in an assignment, assuming that popular sources were appropriate for that assignment?

  3. Open access is currently a big movement in the world of academic journals, but it has resulted in a lack of control over quality in scholarly content. Using the same Spider method as before, examine these two databases of open-access journals:


Worksheets will be handed out in class, but they are also provided here.