Sample web sites based on trying to find credible research on bats
The site looks like it would be fun for children, but is not appropriate for serious research.
- Qualifications? none.
- Who wrote this? Can't find who.
- References? none.
- Date? none.
- Bias? no serious bias, other than they like bats.
- Accurate? Don't know, no references to look up. Would have to verify.
- URL (domain) owns own domain, .org.
This site is better, but is a fact sheet rather than an article providing in-depth research.
- Qualifications? Sketchy. All we know is there is a Zoology editor on staff, but do not know this person's educational background.
- Who wrote this? Do not know who specifically wrote it, though in these cases, general staff (who are mentioned) will write the generic text.
- References? No. We might assume the zoologist editor on staff has the knowledge, but probably need to verify.
- Date? The site is copyrighted 1996-2008. The article does not have a specified date on the page, but is part of a Jan97 folder, which we can guess is 1997. There is an event advertised at the top of the article that is October of 2007.
- Bias? Mild bias simply because the organization wants to educate people about bats.
- Accurate? Probably, but would need to verify the data.
- URL (domain)? It is a .com
- The site also has advertisements for subject matter other than bats.
This site leads you to legitimate research through forums that are produced in PDF's rather than text in the web site (note: the papers you get from this site would be what you use and cite, not the web page itself).
- Qualifications? From a legitimate government site called: U.S. Office of Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement
- Who wrote this? Individuals from such places as the Bat Conservation International, Inc.
- References? Yes - at the end of each paper.
- Date? Yes, dates are mentioned in the same text where the link to the forum is.
- Bias? The site itself may have some bias, but this bias is not able to bleed over into the presented papers due to the nature of the presentation. Each paper may have some bias one way or another, but not enough to dismiss them as unusable.
- Accurate? Can assume so
- URL? Site is a government site, .gov