Don’t Trust Everything You Find

Finding information using library research resources is easy, but you still need to decide if the information you find is good enough to use in your assignments and projects.

This is because not all information is from reliable or trustworthy sources. 


1. Evaluation Criteria

To help you decide if the information you find is good enough to use, we suggest you look at these six evaluation criteria:

1. Currency – is the information up-to-date?
2. Relevance – is it useful?
3. Adequacy – is there enough information?
4. Reliability – is it believable?
5. Accuracy – is it free from error?
6. Objectivity – is it factual?
Evaluating Information Infographic

Infographic Summary of these Criteria

(Criteria outline provided by Temasek Polytechnic Applied Science School)

3. Easy Exercise to Try Now

Let us say that your topic is:
The promotion of sporting culture in Singapore“.

Read this article on sports marketing – If you sell it… (Note: access is for TP Library members only) – and think about the following points:

Currency – the article was published in 2000. The topic of marketing these days has quite a fast pace of change so this article may be a little old. Fast pace? Think about all the changes Social Media has brought about.

Relevance – while the topic is sports marketing, it only deals with baseball. Although there may be some similarities with the state of soccer in Singapore, there are probably other articles better suited to your needs.

Adequacy – the article is very short, but there is one good idea that can be used for the topic of promotion – see the last sentence.

Reliability – there is no named author, and the source is a popular magazine (check Google if you don’t believe me). This makes it a bit hard to check how reliable the information is.

Accuracy – there is so little information provided that it would be difficult to check for errors other than with the spelling.

Objectivity – there is some bias in that the article refers to baseball as being the favorite” in “the sports marketing universe”. Mmm, this may be true in America, but what about the rest of the world?

So, do you use this article for your assignment or not? As the article does make at least one good point, we suggest you see how many other information sources are available before you decide.

That’s right – it’s up to you