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Ranger School Quick Start Research Guide: Evaluate Sources

Evaluate the PARTS

Analyze the PARTS before using a source.


  • What is the author trying to accomplish?
  • Was it written from a particular viewpoint?
  • Who is the intended audience?
  • Does it contain advertising?


  • Who is writing your source?
  • What are their credentials?
  • Who has cited this author elsewhere?
  • Who is publishing this source? Academic scientific journal, non-profit, cooperation, individual?


  • Does this fit your topic?


  • When was this published or created?
  • Is there a newer version / edition / revision?


  • What is your source? peer-reviewed article, website, magazine article, opinion piece, blog, etc.?
  • Does it contain sources?