Accuracy & Currency
Use these criteria to assist you in evaluating the currency and accuracy of a Web document.
- When was the information created or last updated?
- Is the source appropriate for your needs?
Areas of continuing and rapid development, such as the sciences, demand more current information. Topics in the humanities often require resources that were written many years ago.
- How current are the links, statistical data, illustrations, etc.?
Don't use undated factual or statistical information.
- Does the information appear to be valid and well researched, or is it questionable and unsupported by evidence?
- What is its relation to other works on the subject?
Some Internet resources have print counterparts which may or may not contain more information than the Internet resource.
Where to Look
- The date is usually found at the header or footer of the document. If a date is included it may have various meanings: date created, date revised, or date placed on the Web.
- Look at other pages on this site for a date. Keep in mind, however, that not all pages are updated at the same time.
- Have you see this site mentioned in an article, book, or other information resource on the Internet? Accurate and reliable Web documents are cited frequently by other sources.
- Look for similar Web sites and compare the information for accuracy and currency.
- Are the sources for any factual information clearly stated?