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Leslie J. Savage Library

SCI 120 - Living Planet: Evaluating Resources

SCI 120

Library Class Guide

Evaluate with the SAVAGE Library Evaluation Method

SUBSTANCE

  • When was the information published or posted?  
  • Has the information been revised or updated?  
  • Does your topic require current information, or will older sources work as well?  
  • Are there spelling, grammar or typographical errors? 
  • Does the language or tone seem unbiased and free of emotion? 

Developed by Renée Barney, Information Literacy Librarian at Western Colorado University. Derived from the CRAAP method from CSU, Chico and the Quail method from Larry Sheret, Marshall University.

AUTHORITY

  • Who is the author/publisher/source/sponsor?  
  • What are the author's credentials or organizational affiliations?  
  • Is the author qualified to write on the topic?  
  • Is there contact information, such as a publisher or email address?

Developed by Renée Barney, Information Literacy Librarian at Western Colorado University. Derived from the CRAAP method from CSU, Chico and the Quail method from Larry Sheret, Marshall University.

VERIFY

  • Where does the information come from?  
  • Is the information supported by evidence?  
  • Has the information been reviewed or refereed? 
  • Can you verify any of the information in another source or from personal knowledge?  
  • Does the author use citations?

 

Developed by Renée Barney, Information Literacy Librarian at Western Colorado University. Derived from the CRAAP method from CSU, Chico and the Quail method from Larry Sheret, Marshall University.

AIM

  • What is the purpose of the information? Is it to inform, teach, sell, entertain or persuade?  
  • Do the authors/sponsors make their intentions or purpose clear?  
  • Is the information fact, opinion or propaganda?  
  • Does the point of view appear objective and impartial?  
  • Are there political, ideological, cultural, religious, institutional or personal biases?

 

Developed by Renée Barney, Information Literacy Librarian at Western Colorado University. Derived from the CRAAP method from CSU, Chico and the Quail method from Larry Sheret, Marshall University.

GERMANENESS

  • Does the information relate to your topic or answer your question?  
  • Who is the intended audience? (Was it written for the general public, elementary level students, other researchers in the field, etc?)
  • Is the information at an appropriate comprehension level (i.e. not too elementary or advanced for your needs)? 
  • Have you looked at a variety of sources before determining this is one you will use?  
  • Would you be comfortable citing this source in your research paper? 

Developed by Renée Barney, Information Literacy Librarian at Western Colorado University. Derived from the CRAAP method from CSU, Chico and the Quail method from Larry Sheret, Marshall University.

ELECTRONIC (Additional website considerations)

  • Is important information two clicks away?
  • Is there a charge to use the site and will my personal information be protected?
  • Does the URL reveal anything about the author or source?
  • Does the site adhere to copyright law and fair use guidelines?
  • Does the webpage link to reputable sites?
  • Do reputable sites link to the webpage?
  • Do the links work?

Developed by Renée Barney, Information Literacy Librarian at Western Colorado University. Derived from the CRAAP method from CSU, Chico and the Quail method from Larry Sheret, Marshall University.

Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Sources

Primary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • First-hand accounts of events.
  • Original ideas.
  • Empirical observations or research.
  • Diaries
  • Interviews
  • Letters
  • Original works of art
  • Photographs
  • Speeches
  • Works of literature

 

Secondary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • Analyze and interpret historical events or creative works.
  • Provides commentary on a primary source.
  • Offers an interpretation of information found in primary sources.
  • Biographies
  • Dissertations
  • Journal articles
  • Monographs
  • Indexes, abstracts, bibliographies (used to locate a secondary source)

 

Tertiary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • Presents summaries or condensed versions of primary and secondary sources.
  • Rarely contains any original material.
  • Dictionaries
  • Encyclopedias
  • Handbooks

Samples

Subject Primary Secondary Tertiary
Art Monet's "Port-Goulphar, Belle-Île" painting Critical review of the painting Encyclopedia article about Monet
Literature Jane Eyre novel Article about portrayal of disability in Brontë's novels Companion to the Victorian Novel
Music O mie porpore più belle, RV 685 Article studying the tonal disjunction between arias and recitatives Reference article from Grove Music Online about Italian cantatas

This page is modified from Virginia Tech's Library Website, Retrieved December 20, 2016. Link updated May 29, 2018.

Primary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • First-hand accounts of events.
  • Original ideas.
  • Empirical observations or research.
  • Interviews
  • Raw data
  • Newspaper reports about events
  • Notes (i.e. from a psychologist)

 

Secondary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • Analyze and interpret conditions or events.
  • Provides commentary on a primary source.
  • Offers an interpretation of information found in primary sources.
  • Dissertations
  • Journal articles
  • Monographs
  • News commentaries
  • Magazine articles

 

Tertiary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • Presents summaries or condensed versions of primary and secondary sources.
  • Rarely contains any original material.
  • Dictionaries
  • Encyclopedias
  • Handbooks

Samples

Subject Primary Secondary Tertiary
Anthropology Interview with member of the Hopi tribe Book about Hopi land disputes Encyclopedia of Native American tribes
Psychology Clinical case notes Article about treatments for social anxiety disorder Handbook of Psychology
History Civil War diary Article about the Battle of Antietam Chronological Encyclopedia of the Civil War
Political Science Geneva Conventions Article about prisoners of war List of treaties
       

This page is modified from Virginia Tech's Library Website, Retrieved December 20, 2016. Link updated May 29, 2018.

Primary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • Scientists present results of research.
  • Original documents.
  • First-hand accounts.
  • Conference proceedings
  • Interviews
  • Journals
  • Lab notebooks
  • Patents
  • Preprints
  • Technical reports
  • Theses and dissertations

 

Secondary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • Analyze and interpret scientific research.
  • Compare various ideas & theories.
  • Summary of existing state of knowledge.
  • Monographs
  • Reviews
  • Textbooks
  • Treatises

 

Tertiary Sources

Description: Examples:
  • Presents summaries or condensed versions of primary and secondary sources.
  • Rarely contains any original material.
  • Dictionaries
  • Encyclopedias
  • Handbooks
  • Tables
  • Compilations

Samples

Subject Primary Secondary Tertiary
Environmental Science Case study on sustainable energy Book on sustainable practices in communities Encyclopedia article about alternative energy
Chemistry Chemical patent Book on chemical reactions Dictionary of chemistry
Geology Research study on geology and sediment properties Book on geology along the Gold Rush trail Encyclopedia of geology
Biology Research study about chemotherapy and lymph node dissection Book on the biology of plants Handbook of the biology of aging
Mathematics Euclid's Elements Book about Euclid's life & work Handbook of Mathematics

This page is modified from Virginia Tech's Library Website, Retrieved December 20, 2016. Link updated May 29, 2018.

Information Literacy and Instructional Design Librarian

Melissa Huang's picture
Melissa Huang
Contact:
1 Western Way
Library 210
Gunnison, CO 81230
970-943-2898

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