Note: There are some excellent resources listed here, but please keep in mind that in general many Web-based resources must be reviewed for authority, accuracy and authenticity. Also, Web materials are time-sensitive - a page in existence one week may not be around the following week. We have tried to list reliable, stable websites, but these tenets are always good to keep in mind while browsing ...
Google is a place to start but be sure you use the databases listed on the Databases & Indexes page of this guide. A controlled vocabulary search is often more reliable & less overwhelming than a Google search.
If you use Google for a web search; use Google Advanced which gives you more control over the results. If you limit by Domain you can see the results from goverment sites (.gov), organizations sites (.org), or education sites (.edu). You can also limit by when the site was last updated.
Evaluate sites the way you would evaluate a book or other resource. Who sponsors it? When was it last updated? Who wrote it? Who thinks it is a good site? Typing "Link: " then the sites address in the Google search bar should result in a list of sites that links to that particular webpage. Who points to it will tell you something about the usefulness of the page.
If you are off campus, follow this link to Google Scholar Find It @ Cedar Crest so that you also have access to the library's subscriptions.
Searching the web is tracked closely by the providers; such as Google, Bing, etc. Over time the providers know the results you have been going to and will start to ONLY return results they think you want. For example, if you primarily look at conservative political sites; eventually, the typical search engine will only ever return conservative political sites. You will never get any other viewpoint. Scholars are supposed to step back and look at all sides of the research subject. The practice of only returning what matches your search history is called a "search bubble." It is one of the great opinion polarizers of modern web culture. Search providers also sell "top spot" returns which also skew the results you receive.
There are a few steps you can make to minimize the research impact of these practices:
+ Make sure you look at all viewpoints in the first place.
+ Use a non-tracking search engine such as Duck Duck Go.
Check out the link Don't Bubble Us for a clearer explanantion!
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