The Internet provides a wide range of information varying in quality, accuracy, reliability and value. It ranges from the very good to the very bad (inaccurate, biased, shallow, out of date and inappropriate for academic use).
In general, published material is considered more reliable than what is on the web. But many reputable bodies are publishing great things on the web, so you have to critically evaluate the material.
CARS checklist for information quality was developed for checking on Credibility (author's credentials, organizational support, authoritative source), Accuracy (up-to-date, comprehensive), Reasonableness (fairness, objectivity, consistency), and Support (lists sources, bibliographies, contact information). This is of great importance as almost anyone can publish on the Web, and Web standards to ensure accuracy are not developed.
The criteria for critical thinking as stated by Debra Jones can be simplified as:
Sometimes it helps to do a link: search in Google or AltaVista, or to try to find the site in a reputable directory.
Remember that information evaluation through practice of critical thinking skills is an art that gets better with experience.
Many sites provide more information on this topic such as that of University of North Carolina.
There are many programs that help in citing references according to a number of style manuals, such as APA, Turabian, Vancouver, MLA, NLM etc...
AUB Libraries subscribe to the following citation management tools that help in this:
For more information on these you are encouraged to visit the complete ABC guide on how to manage your references from the most important Medical, Nursing, and Public Health databases using Refworks, Endnote Web & Endnote Client.
To format references from a Google Scholar search, follow the below steps: