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Factors to consider when evaluating a website

Updated on July 5, 2017

sample website: https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/adhd/

It is important for the professionals, researchers and the audience to conduct an assessment of the website content so as to ensure that the information they utilize is credible, accurate, relevant and current as much as possible. Key factors to consider in this analysis include authority, accuracy, objectivity, currency and the audience. In light of this, the website under evaluation was found to be credible and relevant in regard to the topic of discussion under this perspective: authority, currency and objectivity. Despite these factors being important in website evaluation, there are also others which are required to ensure effectiveness and credibility of such a website. These include the audience in which the information is directed to, accuracy of the information, and the website URL. All these factors should be taken into consideration for an effective website evaluation. The website under evaluation effectively meets the criteria of a credible website since it adheres to the basic principles of objectivity, currency and authority.

The contents in the website are objective since they are derived from multiple sources. Objectivity is the aspect of presenting ideas that are not biased or raised from a personal perspective. Instead, the author must also explore and discuss other viewpoints regarding the topic. This aspect is important in ensuring that the information presented is evidence based and generated after a thorough research on the issue under discussion. The website has duly adhered to the principle of objectivity since the arguments presented by the author are from diverse sources. In other words, the viewpoints raised are not biased. What is more, there are no personal viewpoints expressed. It should also be considered that the website is a governmental entity whose focus is to protect public health and ensure the wellbeing of citizens (CDC, 2016). This implies that they have not raised the issues or presented information with a focus of attracting audience and therefore, potential customers. Further, there are links for other website to provide more and in-depth information concerning the issue.

Currency is also another important aspect in website evaluation as it ensures that the information is up-to-date. It would not be ideal to utilize information that is outdated in health matters. In this regard, the information in website under evaluation is quite relevant considering the fact that it was published just this year (2016) (CDC, 2016). This gives an implication that the ideas and information presented are up-to date and applicable in the current environment.

The contents in this website can also be said to be authoritative going by the reputation of the publisher. According to a resource by Colorado State University (2013), a website author must identify himself or herself for credibility purposes. This identification should also include the author’s role or place in the field, affiliation to a credible institution or agency, and other information ascertaining the credibility of the author. In this particular website, the author has been identified as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which is a renown public agency that safeguards public health. This therefore, implies that the information presented in this website has authority and therefore can reliability utilized.

In summary, the website under evaluation can be considered as reliable and credible using the factors discussed in this paper. In particular, the website is very much current, having been published just this year, (2016), alongside being objective in nature since it is professionally written and there is no aspect of biasness or conflict of interest. In addition, the website is as well authoritative having been published by a credible research agency in the medical world. What is more, the website also aligns well with other principles such as the Audience to be addressed, accuracy and the domain of its URL.

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