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How To Evaluate Your Sources When You're Writing An Academic Paper?
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How To Evaluate Your Sources When You’re Writing An Academic Paper?

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In: Education


In order to find a good source for writing an academic paper, you need to evaluate it. There is no other way which can assignment help you find the best source. The research paper is a form of academic writing, so you have to be very particular about its every aspect. For a research paper, you must select a topic and generate a research question. The very next step is to research on the chosen topic. The purpose of research is to collect data and support for your research claims. The sources of data collection make your work compelling. How can you have an influential research paper if you provide poor support? Therefore, this article aims to discuss the evaluation criteria of sources.

What are the Steps to Evaluate Sources?

At the time of writing an academic paper, you have to collect data from different sources. The selection of sources should not be random. You must follow the proper criteria to choose a source. In simple words, you need to have quality control over the collected data. Some of the researchers take care of data only. If they find data relevant to the topic of discussion, they go for it. Such researchers always find problems in the publication of research papers. The problem they discover is in the form of data quality. The Internet is full of articles addressing bundles of issues. The point to notice is that not every data ensures quality. Keep it in mind that evaluation of the source is the only way to have surety about the quality of data. Although there are many dissertation writing services UK which can help, however following are some steps that can help you in source evaluation:

  • Credibility of source
  • Precision of data
  • Relevancy of data
  • Most recent data
  • Reliable data

Let’s discuss each criterion in detail.

Credibility of Source

For the credibility of a source, you need to get the information related to the author. There should not be any negative feedback for the author. Also, the successful publications of the author reinforce the satisfaction. At the time of writing an academic paper, the use of credible sources gives you the best end results. In the case of an author, you can check out his history as an author or researcher. The background information includes academic as well as professional careers.

Read some of the writing samples of the author and identify if the justification of a particular problem is logical. In this way, you can see how much expertise an author has in academic writing.

Another way is to check the references provided in the document. All of references must be from reputable sources. Also, there should be a proper citation of the whole document. All these aspects help you determine the credibility of the writer. This is the first and most important criterion for evaluating sources while writing an academic paper.

Precision of Data

The second criterion that helps you identify the source is related to data precision. Suppose your research paper is about a pandemic. You have to go for the sources that have the most recent information. If you go for the source which is addressing the pandemic of ten years ago, it will not benefit you at all. The source must have the most recent information and valid stats. At the time of source evaluation, you can compare the stats and facts of the source with another one. With this comparison, you can confirm the precision of the data.

The precision of stats is not the only thing, but you have to focus on the writing accuracy. It includes mistakes in grammar, sentence structure and punctuation. A source which is free from such errors is acceptable to use while writing an academic paper.

Relevancy of Data

Most of the time, it happens that the source is reliable, but it does not mean you can use its data blindly. You have to check out the relevance of the data. The title of a research paper can be the same, but there can be a difference in the research question. As a single topic of discussion can have a bundle of different problems.

So, you have to go for the one that is applicable to your research question. Writing an academic paper needs great attention to address the problem in an effective way. The selected source covers multiple aspects of a topic. It helps you in having comprehensive details. You have to evaluate the limit to which the selected source can help you find a solution. Also, the way to explain a problem needs to be easy. A good explanation is one that is understandable for most of the readers.

Currency of Source

The term of data currency is about the value of data. When you are writing an academic paper, you have to highlight the currency of data and its source. Some of our study disciplines are ageless, like literature. In contrast, some of the study disciplines need to be updated over a particular period of time. Here, you can take the example of science studies. You have to identify what kind of study discipline you have. Based on the domain of study, evaluate the currency of the source.

Reliable Data

The reliability of the source has a significant contribution to its evaluation. When you are writing an academic paper, you must come up with unbiased data. So, the source from where you are collecting data should also be unbiased. For this evaluation, identify the objective of the study. Furthermore, you must see the targeted area and potential study audience. These aspects will help you determine if the study’s aim has achieved unbiased results or if there is proper justification for it. At the time of writing an academic paper, every writer aims to justify claim of study. The way to justify your claim must be fair that promotes positivity. The source must follow the writing standards accurately.

Final Thoughts

Source evaluation can be the most challenging or easy task to do. Without following some effective tricks, you may have to spend a long time on source evaluation. By following the above-mentioned points, you can end up with good results with less effort and time. In this way, writing an academic paper can be made easy.

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