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FYS 100 (16) - Knowing and Choosing in the Face of Uncertainty and Adversity: Scholarly Websites

FYS Research Guide for Professor Brown's Fall 2017 class.

Scholarly Search Engines

Search Tips

This page does include some links to specialized search engines that will return results from reviewed web sources. However, the best method that I've found to locate scholarly websites is to do a regular search in Google or another general search engine, and then apply the website evaluation methods listed in the box below. Use your common sense! Don't worry too much about the Web domain (.edu, etc.), but do look for information about author's credentials, as well as any references to where they got their information. Also, consider the audience. Who is the website intended for? What is its purpose?

Website Evaluation

On the World Wide Web, scholarly researchers face the challenge of navigating and extracting useable information from over 100 million indexed sites and over 46 billion pages. Here are some signs of a good scholarly web resource:

Trusted URLs

.edu, .gov, .mil contain the most reliable and unbiased info


Look for the author's name, credentials and affiliation to give clues to the contents' quality and objectivity. You should expect the same information quality from a web page as you would from a scholarly print or database source. For pages authored by organizations, look for the site's "About Us" section.


When was the page created or last updated?


Sources used for the page should be cited and working links provided for more information on the topic.


Trustworthy sites should not have spelling, grammatical or factual errors.

Subject Guide

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Sojourna Cunningham
185, Research & Collaborative Area, Boatwright Library
28 Westhampton Way
Richmond, VA 23173
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