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  • Questions to Ask about Field Sources
    in Your Research Consider a Source s Origins Are they Primary or Secondary Consider a Source s Evidence Is it Accurate Balanced Resources Print Friendly Format About this Guide Contributors Citation Evaluating Sources Questions to Ask about Field Sources Does your source seem biased or prejudiced If so is this bias or prejudice so strong that you have to discount some of the information Have you compared different people s opinions or accounts In general the more viewpoints the better Does the information from your source agree with published accounts in print or Internet sources If not can you think of a good reason why this would be so Is any of your evidence hearsay one person telling you the thoughts of another or telling you about comments or actions that he or she hasn t witnessed If so can you support or discount your source s view by comparing it with other evidence If an interviewee or questionnaire respondent has told you about past events has time possibly distorted his or her memory If you have tried to question a random sampling of people do you feel that they are truly representative If you have tried to question everyone

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/page.cfm?pageid=234&guideid=15 (2015-10-15)
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  • Consider a Source's Degree of Specialization
    its Author Consider a Source s Publishing Bias Strategies for Evaluating a Web Site Strategies for Evaluating a Periodical Consider a Source s Publication Medium Questions to Ask about Print Sources Questions to Ask about Electronic Sources Questions to Ask about Field Sources Consider a Source s Publication Date Consider a Source s Degree of Specialization Consider a Source s Role in Your Research Consider a Source s Origins Are they Primary or Secondary Consider a Source s Evidence Is it Accurate Balanced Resources Print Friendly Format About this Guide Contributors Citation Evaluating Sources Consider a Source s Degree of Specialization Some sources are considered to be general that is they are written for a general interest audience Newspapers and popular magazines typically provide general information about a topic or issue In contrast highly specialized publications are written for specific specialized audiences such as microbiologists mortgage bankers and auto mechanics General sources can be helpful as you begin your research but as your project develops you may need the deeper authority of specialized sources to provide the latest information on your topic Keep in mind when using extremely specialized works that you may get people in over their heads Be

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/page.cfm?pageid=236&guideid=15 (2015-10-15)
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  • Consider a Source's Role in Your Research
    Print Sources Questions to Ask about Electronic Sources Questions to Ask about Field Sources Consider a Source s Publication Date Consider a Source s Degree of Specialization Consider a Source s Role in Your Research Consider a Source s Origins Are they Primary or Secondary Consider a Source s Evidence Is it Accurate Balanced Resources Print Friendly Format About this Guide Contributors Citation Evaluating Sources Consider a Source s Role in Your Research For some papers it may be appropriate to cite an article in a popular magazine and for others it may be necessary to cite the research findings published in the scholarly journal on which the magazine article was based So why use one source over another You must consider what role the source will play in your paper Ask yourself is the information it contains useful for your purposes as a writer Does the source contain strong quotations or hard facts that would be effective in your final paper Is it relevant in terms of the subject matter and in the way it tackles it Remember what you re looking for is the best possible sources for your particular paper Ask yourself not only Will this do but Will something else be better Consider as well how using this source in your paper will affect the future direction of your research Does it contain information that challenges your assumptions about the topic Does it present any strong evidence against your position that you must then counter or refute with opposing evidence Does it suggest a new direction that might be more interesting Your research project will probably grow and change as you learn more about it It s wise to check in with yourself now and again to make sure you have a clear direction and if

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/page.cfm?pageid=237&guideid=15 (2015-10-15)
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  • Consider a Source's Origins: Are they Primary or Secondary?
    Source s Role in Your Research Consider a Source s Origins Are they Primary or Secondary Consider a Source s Evidence Is it Accurate Balanced Resources Print Friendly Format About this Guide Contributors Citation Evaluating Sources Consider a Source s Origins Are they Primary or Secondary A primary source is a firsthand account written by an eyewitness or a participant It contains raw data and immediate impressions For example primary sources for a large fire caused by a gas leak would include the statements of victims and witnesses the article written by a journalist who was at the scene and the report of the fire chief in charge of putting out the blaze A secondary source is an analysis of the information contained in one or more primary sources For example a second journalist using the article on the large fire and gas leak as background for a story on industrial accidents or a historian using the same for a book on urban life in the twentieth century are secondary sources For most research papers both primary and secondary sources will be used Secondary sources are no less trustworthy than firsthand reports Remember eyewitnesses can be prejudiced self serving or simply less informed than a later writer who has synthesized many eyewitness accounts In writing a history paper on the attitudes of American social workers toward World War I you might quote a primary source Jane Addams founder of Chicago s Hull House who was a pacifist If you relied only on Addams words alone however your reader might get the idea that social workers were unanimously opposed to the war effort To put Addams views into perspective you d also want to include secondary sources showing that most of her peers did not identify with pacifism and publicly disagreed

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/page.cfm?pageid=238&guideid=15 (2015-10-15)
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  • Consider a Source's Evidence: Is it Accurate & Balanced?
    Strategies for Evaluating a Periodical Consider a Source s Publication Medium Questions to Ask about Print Sources Questions to Ask about Electronic Sources Questions to Ask about Field Sources Consider a Source s Publication Date Consider a Source s Degree of Specialization Consider a Source s Role in Your Research Consider a Source s Origins Are they Primary or Secondary Consider a Source s Evidence Is it Accurate Balanced Resources Print Friendly Format About this Guide Contributors Citation Evaluating Sources Consider a Source s Evidence Is it Accurate Balanced The evidence provided by a source it s information opinions and ideas will tell you a great deal about its reliability and usefulness As you evaluate a source consider whether the evidence is carefully put together complete and up to date Consider the thesis if any and whether it is supported or defended by the presentation of credible evidence Ask whether the argument or analysis is convincing If the source seems slipshod or leaves several important questions unanswered you might do better to look for another source To evaluate the evidence in a source ask yourself the following questions What is the author s main point How much and what kind of evidence supports that point How persuasive is the evidence Does it support the argument Is there any questionable or misleading logic and reasoning Can you offer credible arguments contrary to the evidence Working with Field Sources When working in the field ask similar questions to those already mentioned regarding the evidence provided and the credibility of its sources Ask yourself When interviewing someone or attending a public lecture are the responses provided to your questions consistent with those provided to others Does the speaker or person being interviewed provide corroborative evidence supporting the claims being made When analyzing the

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/page.cfm?pageid=239&guideid=15 (2015-10-15)
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  • Focus your commenting energy
    want to improve student writing remember that students can only take in so much information about a paper at one time Particularly because writing is such an egocentric activity writers tend to feel overloaded quickly by excessively detailed feedback about their writing Moreover because most writing can be considered work in progress because students will continue to think about the content and presentation of their papers even if they don t actively revise commenting exhaustively on every feature of a draft is counter productive Too many comments can make student writers feel as if the teacher is taking control of the paper and cutting off productive avenues for revision Focusing your energy when commenting achieves two main goals It leaves students in control of their writing so that they can consider revising or at least learning from the experience of having written the paper It gives teachers a sense of tackling the most important elements of a paper rather than getting bogged down in detail that might just get ignored by the student Typically we recommend that teachers comment discursively on the one or two most important features of a paper determined either by your criteria for the assignment or

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/teaching/grading/pop2a.cfm (2015-10-15)
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  • Handling grammar
    won t want to mark any grammatical flaws because the writing is designed to be impromptu and informal If you assign more polished pieces especially those that adhere to disciplinary conventions then we suggest putting the burden of proofreading squarely where it belongs on the writer You don t need to be an expert in grammar to assign and respond effectively to writing assignments Click on the list below to

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/teaching/grading/pop2b.cfm (2015-10-15)
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  • Use a grading sheet
    Sample grading sheets Resource Sample grading criteria Additional Resources Print Friendly Page Authors Contributors Use a grading sheet Grading comment sheets or checksheets give teachers and students two advantages over free form grading Grading sheets of some sort assure that teachers will give students feedback about all the major criteria they set out on the assignment sheet Even if you decide to use a simple checksheet that ranks students performance on each criterion on a 1 10 scale students will be able to see quickly where their strengths and weaknesses are as writers for this assignment Grading sheets particularly checksheets typically save teachers time Even composition teachers don t comment exhaustively about each criterion for each assignment so too disciplinary teachers should be aware that they can comment at some length on just one or two points typically the major strength and the major weakness and then rely on the checksheet to fill in for less crucial areas of the paper If students are concerned about getting more feedback than the checksheet provides you can encourage them to come to your office hours or send you an e mail query Tweet HELP SITE INDEX ABOUT THIS SITE CONTACT Writing CSU

    Original URL path: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/teaching/grading/pop2c.cfm (2015-10-15)
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