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RELS-239: Religion and Sport

When it comes to finding information on a subject, most people start with tools like Google and Wikipedia. There are numerous advantages to this approach, such as...

  • there is plenty of content
  • it is easy to search
  • content is current/timely
  • it is convenient

However, there are drawbacks that need to be considered.

  • the volume of information can be overwhelming
  • there can be a lot of irrelevant retrieval
  • date coverage is often unclear
  • it can be difficult to determine what information is legitimate/authoritative/unbiased
  • search engines only index a fraction of the available data
  • some information may be fee-based and therefore inaccessible

In other words, a website might look good and be found relatively easily...but that does not mean it contains high quality information. Therefore it is necessary to become an expert at evaluating the trustworthiness of content. The same skills you will develop to evaluate websites will also help you evaluate scholarly content e.g. journal articles.