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Research: Introduction

  1. Plan how you will tackle the research.
  2. Identify possible resources to use such as: journal articles, books, newspaper articles, or websites.
  3. Locate resources in the library and online.
  4. Evaluate the resources you have found critically.
  5. Document the details of the resources you use.

Evaluating online information/news



SIFT is recommended by the FBI

  • Train employees to use the SIFT media resiliency framework, which encourages individuals to Stop, Investigate information’s source, Find trusted coverage, and Trace the original content. (Source)

Why can't I just google it?

This video has been created by LaTrobe University Library. Although it addresses university students, it is just as relevant to us (although we are not always looking for peer-reviewed articles, but we are always looking for authoritative information.)

Pros and cons of Google search:

Pros of Google: Google is free and easy to use. Advanced Search allows you to refine your results.

Pros of Google Scholar: Google Scholar includes peer reviewed content, although some results are behind a paywall. Results include citations and references. 

Cons of Google: Google search results can be overwhelming and therefore confusing. You will have to evaluate the results for relevance and credibility. In addition, since Google benefits from advertising, be careful to recognise the ads which are at the top of the search results. You will have to evaluate your results.

Cons of Google Scholar: Not everything is freely accessible in full-text. 

Read more about Google Scholar search tips

It's important to practise click restraint when researching online. This means not clicking on the first search results you see, but scanning the page, the title, source description, and featured sections, before selecting sources. Follow the practices of fact checkers, who exercise critical caution by recognizing that not all sources are reliable. This will help you avoid “rabbit holes” and misleading information. 

Subject guide created by

Guide created by Tania Sheko. Contact me