Posted by Marti Weston on December 2, 2011
Even in today’s fast-paced virtual world, these tips never seem to age. Help kids learn to make good choices.
1. Who made the site? Is it from a university or other institution? Is it for-profit or non-profit. Corporate? Look for an “about” link that describes the site.
2. When was the site made and how often is the site updated? Somewhere, usually at top or bottom it should tell. Is this site updated recently? If not this may be a reason to check out another website on your topic.
3. Is it possible to contact the webmaster or the sponsor of the site? Is there a “contact us” link somewhere on the page?
4. How much advertising is on the page, and how aggressive is it? Good sites that use advertising are careful to keep it from being “in your face.”
5. Does the site state its mission? Why was it set up?
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Posted in attributing sources, digital learning, digital parenting, evaluating web site resources, parents and technology | Tagged: attribution, digital parenting, evaluating websites, homework, searching, web resources, websites | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Marti Weston on October 5, 2011
Do you know how to help your children evaluate sites and make good quality choices?
Below are four links to university library websites where parents learn more about how to judge the quality of a website. Following the separate resources is a small collection of links that can help middle and elementary school students learn how to evaluate the quality of a website.
Web Evaluation Resources for Parents
Web Evaluation Resources for Students
Posted in attributing sources, digital parenting, Evaluating Web Resources, online research, parents and technology, web research | Tagged: digital parenting, digital resources, evaluating resources, using the web, websites | 1 Comment »
Posted by Marti Weston on September 29, 2011
If you find yourself thinking about the digital research activities of children, especially older students who complete significant amounts of their research using the unlimited resources available on the World Wide Web, you are not alone. Over the past 10 years I have wondered — more than once and sometimes with great angst — if my child and the many children I’ve known really understand the need to evaluate the resources that they find on the web.
Earlier this year I discovered a small book, published by the MacArthur Foundation, describing research that explored how children perceive the quality and reliability of digital media. It’s a book that concerned parents may want to read. In Kids and Credibility: An Empirical Examination of Youth, Digital Media Use, and Information Credibility, authors Andrew J. Flanagin and Miriam J. Metzger, summarize their study as a “…comprehensive investigation into youth’s Internet use and their assessment of the credibility of online information.” The authors wondered whether young digital media users, while sophisticated and fearless about using technology, could evaluate information and determine its quality.
To learn more about young people and web credibility the researchers planned and executed a web-based survey of more than 2,000 children age 11 – 18. Study participants also completed a range of Internet tasks, evaluating information, making judgements about content, and explaining how and why they complete web tasks in certain ways. While there is far too much to cover in one blog post — check out the many interesting graphs in the publication — I’ve listed a few of the most interesting observations below. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in attributing sources, digital learning, digital parenting, Evaluating Web Resources, interesting research, research on the web | Tagged: credibility, evaluation, Kids and Credibility, MacArthur Foundation, web searches, World Wide Web | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Marti Weston on September 13, 2011
Old card catalog drawers at the Library of Congress
When I was in what we used to call junior high, working on my first bona-fide school research projects, mired down with things to read, and wishing to be finished, my father reminded me over and over again, “… you cannot attribute too much, only too little.” Even now, years later, with only a few words written on a page, I start thinking about Dad’s attribution credo.
Every parent of digital kids needs to share Dad’s strategy whenever children are working on school projects and papers. It is way too easy, in this age of Google, Wikipedia, and easy instant access to digitized scholarly articles, to write about another person’s ideas without giving credit.
I was reminded of my dad when I read the September 11, 2011 Washington Post Ombudsman column. In Plagiarism or Poor Attribution? Patrick B. Pexton writes about an op-ed piece on women and computer programming that appeared two weeks earlier, one that described how many woman used to be programmers. Pexton wonders if the author credited enough of her sources. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in attributing sources, digital learning, digital parenting, family conversations, parents and technology, plagiarism, research on the web | Tagged: Ann Lewis, attributing sources, attribution, digital parenting, digital research, family conversations, Nathan Ensmenger, Patrick Pexton, plagiarism, Washington Post | Leave a Comment »