Evaluating Article Database Search Results

As with books, you can do a preliminary evaluation of your search results in article databases, too. This first level of evaluation can take place as you look at your retrieved list of citations.

article results page

What can you find out about the articles in this list of brief citations?

  • According to the article title, what is the article about?
  • Do you know who wrote each one?
  • How much information is available in the article? How long is it? (This is given right after the starting page number.)
  • What is the name of the magazine or journal? (This follows the author(s) or the title if no author is provided.)
  • Does this magazine or journal seem to have a target audience (general readers, specialists in field, etc.)?
  • When was it published? Will this be important for the topic?
  • How much of it is available? the complete text (with or without graphics), or just citation and abstract?