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Designing Better Research Assignments

Compare Sources

  • Have students compare a popular source (e.g. popular magazine or newspaper) with a scholarly source (e.g. peer-reviewed article). Both sources should deal with the same topic.

OR

  • Provide students with a number of sources, which you, the course instructor have pre-selected. Students can work in pairs or groups, but each group should have 2-3 sources to examine. Have students answer questions about the sources:
    • What is it (website, book chapter, news story, research article, etc.)?
    • Who is the author and what expertise does the author have (they will need to research this)?
    • Who is the intended audience?
    • How could you use this source? What does it tell you?
  • Option: Have each group present their findings to the other groups.

OR

  • Have students compare a Wikipedia entry with a traditional encyclopedia entry and compare the strengths and weaknesses. As a class, you can come up with criteria you want to use to evaluate the encyclopedia sources.

OR

  • Students do research to locate two articles on the same topic, but the articles take different perspectives or provide a different analysis. Students present or share their findings.

Sources

University of Texas Libraries. Information Literacy Toolkit. Retrieved from https://guides.lib.utexas.edu/toolkit

University of Alberta Library. Augustana Plan for the Integration of Information Literacy (APIIL). Retrieved from: https://guides.library.ualberta.ca/augustana/apiil/authority#s-lg-box-wrapper-18907923

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