Oh, I know my sources.

After reading the prompt, I realized that I don’t typically have only one source that I use when doing research on a certain topic. I typically have several mainly to keep the information I find varied and to keep the information in check and balance with what is accurate and usable and not.

One of the main sources I use, if I need to find a quote from someone credible regarding whatever topic is The New York Times. Their website has always proved worthy when I was in need of a good, qualified quote.  Their authors are typically educated individuals who have knowledge regarding their topics and who express their opinions well. Although sometimes the authors may be biased, that bias actually provides a great opportunity to read someones opinion about a topic and gain a better understanding from one perspective in order to question the topic further and pursue finding information about the opposing side of a subject matter. Another reason why I find the New York Times website a good website is because it is a well known and credible.  Whether people agree with what authors write or not, the website maintains a reputation that inherently gives it its credibility. Also, if I’m unsure about an author, I’m able to type in their name into Google and typically I’m able to find plenty of information about their credentials, degrees they may have attained, what companies they’ve worked for as published writers, and so on. I usually use The New York Times when ever I have a research project, which isn’t very often, but it has been consistently a great tool. When reading an article from The New York Times, I check its credibility by checking the date, when the article was updated, if at all, check the author’s credibility and usually I’ll try to find a couple other articles about the same topic, say if it were concerning an event that happened, I’ll try to find other articles that refer to the same event and compare and contrast the details and perspectives.

Another source that I’ll use is CNN.com. I’ll basically use the same method approach to analyzing CNN that I do for The New York Times when using this source. Also, as sort of a side note, I use the college’s research tools often as well. Usually as a starting ground for gaining other sources that I may be able to look into. The reason why I do that is because it is a college resource. That automatically, to me anyway, deems a source credible because a college is using it. I do of course still check everything for comforts sake, but I don’t think I’ve ever experienced a college resource being faulty.
I think it is important to have several baseline sources to use. Being able to find information, and credible information for that matter is crucial, not only for college students, but just to be a well informed individual that doesn’t just soak up the crap they are handed verbally or visually.


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