Ever wondered what's the big deal with using the internet for research? It has everything, right? Not quite...find out the major differences between the internet and academic databases and if the internet still is what you want for your research papers...
Free Internet vs. Library Database: Which is the Best for Me?
A worldwide system of computer networks
Provides access to a wide range of free information
A place for people to share thoughts, products, and ideas
Online Search Tools
Databases index journal articles, conference papers, book reviews, and other scholarly information.
A simple and basic opening screen
A complicated screen: advanced search options, parameters available
Required advanced search techniques
Millions of Results: not organized
More manageable number of results: organized and indexed
Multimedia Results: websites, images, videos, etc.
Articles, pictures, books
Unclear results descriptions: incomplete sentences from the website, not a summary
Organized and clear result illustrations: publication info, subject terms…
Little control over results
More control over your results: range results by dates, relevant; email results to yourself, cite your result…
No special audience
A targeted audience
No review/editorial process with regard to content
Articles are reviewed by scholars, professors and researchers
Tips for Evaluating Websites
Not all websites were created equal. When determining how or if you should use a specific website in your work, run it through the CRAP test. Does the site pass the test, or is it a bunch of...?
How recent is the information?
How recently has the website been updated?
Is it current enough for your topic?
What kind of information is included in the resource?
Is the content of the resource primarily opinion? Is it balanced?
Does the creator provide references or sources for data or quotations?
Who is the creator or author?
What are the credentials?
Who is the published or sponsor?
Are they reputable?
What is the publisher's interest (if any) in this information?
Are there advertisements on the website?
Purpose/Point of View
Is this fact or opinion?
Is it biased?
Is the creator/author trying to sell you something?