7th Grade Research Paper Resources

SIRS Knowledge Source
Paraphrasing
Paraphrasing Self-Test: Use this to test your ability to successfully paraphrase.
How to Write a Killer Thesis Statement
How to Evaluate a Website
Website Evaluator
Works Cited Tools
EasyBib BibMe Citation Machine
Evaluating Websites
ABCD Evaluation Tool Option 1 ABCD Evaluation Tool Option 2
Consider the AUTHOR! Check out this site: http://allaboutexplorers.com

What should you find out about the author of a website?

  • Are the authors experts and qualified to write on the topic?  What are their credentials?
    You may need to do some clicking and scrolling to find the author’s name. If you have landed directly on an internal page of a site, for example, you may need to navigate to the home page or find an “about this site” or “about the author” link to learn the name of the author.
  • Are they affiliated with any organizations or a university?
  • Do a little investigating on the author and the source to make sure the information provided can be considered reputable.
  • If there is no author, think twice before using the source.
Consider BIAS! Check out this site: http://www.thedogisland.com/
Does the information seem one sided? Are any other perspectives or views presented/addressed?

Did you check for bias? Ask yourself why was this written and for whom?

  • Does this information presented cover all sides of the topic in a neutral, objective manner? What is the purpose of this information… to inform, teach, persuade, or sell?
  • Does the author or publisher endorse political or religious views that could affect objectivity? Could they be presenting only one side of the issue or putting a slant on the issue?
  • Is the author or publisher associated with a special-interest group, such as Greenpeace or the National Rifle Association, that might present only one side of an issue?
  • Are alternative views presented and addressed? How fairly does the author treat opposing views?
  • Does the author’s language show signs of bias?
    Biased language = words and phrases that are considered prejudiced, offensive, and hurtful. Biased language includes expressions that demean or exclude people because of age, sex, race, ethnicity, social class, or certain physical or mental traits.
Consider CONTENT! Check out this site: http://www.molossia.org/
Would you be able to verify this content? Could you explore other sources/websites to confirm this is reliable content? Try to find more information on the Republic of Molossia.

How can you determine if the content is accurate and useful to you?

  • Critically evaluate the actual content of the document.  Is the information provided as a superficial overview or a detailed analysis?
  • Is the information relevant to your topic or does it deviate too much?
  • Is the readership level too simple or too sophisticated?
  • Also, focus on the accuracy of the content.  Does the information match your understanding of the topic and can you verify the claims in other sources?  Compare its findings to those of other related articles.  Do not rely on only one source. 
Consider DATE! Check out this site:  http://www.furnetics.com/
Check out the date from the following website for gene therapy.
Why should a date of a website matter?

Consider the date! Was was the information published, updated, or revised?

  • When was it produced?
  • When was it updated?
  • How up-to-date are the links? Are there dead links?
  • Is the page content outdated? Are some topics more “time sensitive” than other?
  • Look for the date “last updated” – usually at the bottom of a web page.