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CRJU 3020: Research Methods In Criminal Justice

This guide will help you find information and resources on research methods. Click on the various links to access library resources plus reliable, relevant websites.



Credibility Check

Before you use a resource in your paper, you need to determine if it is credible.  There are many approaches but this is one I find easy to remember:


C -  Currency: When was the page created? Or when was the article or book published ? If it is a website, are the links still active? Given your topic, how recent do your resouces have to be?

A – Authority: Who is the author? What are the author's credentials? If it is a website, what is the domain name for the site? (e.g. .edu; .org) If it is in print, is it from a reputable publisher?

B – Bias: What is the purpose of the resource? Is there a position/opinion presented? If it is a website, what types of sites are being linked to? Are they random or well-known sites? If it is a print resource, who are the advertisers?

L – Level: Do you feel comfortable using this site for a college-level assignment? Is the site popular or intended for specialists?

E – Exploration: Verify the information in other sources. You are reading a lot on your topic, and soon you will be able to identify certain universal ideas and trends in your area. Match what you have learned against the resources you are considering - does it jive?

! - Is the resouce available in time for it to be properly read and incorporated into your paper?