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ENGL 105: Valenzuela: Websites

Quick Guide to Types of Websites

Websites that originate in the US have these suffixes:

.com = commercial site, with a business purpose (usually to sell their goods or services).

.edu = educational site, with a teaching purpose (usually). 

.org = organization, usually with an advocacy purpose (and bias - which isn't a bad thing, so long as you factor that into your understanding).

.gov = city, state, or federal government agency. Often they are mandated to publish information that was funded by taxpayers.

All of these sources will have a purpose and an agenda for publishing their information. Be sure you figure out what that agenda is, and factor in their bias when you evaluate their content!

Other suffixes you might find:

.net = network (not helpful in evaluating information) = academic site from the United Kingdom (similar to US .edu)

Level Up Your Google Skills

Three ways to Google:

1.  Advanced Google Search

  • On this advanced page you can use this: "Search within a site or domain" to limit your search to .edu and .org
  • Use quotation marks for phrases like "human computer interaction"
  • Always be critical! Information from a .edu or a .org should be approached critically, too!

2. Google Scholar

  • It's powerful, like a cross between Google and a database - see the Tip on the Articles page in this guide for more details.
  • It's a bit frustrating, because most of the articles are not available "full-text"
  • Solution: articles that have "PDF" on the right side of screen often are "full-text"
  • Another solution: Ask a librarian for help in getting the full-text.

3.  Google News

  • News sources from around the world
  • Good for getting current articles on recent news