Evaluating Information Sources
Library 103

Course Syllabus

Course Description :

Library 103 teaches students how to determine the information requirements for the research question, problem or issue at hand, and how to analyze and evaluate print and electronic information sources, with special attention to evaluation and critical treatment of information received from the Internet and the mass media.

Course Objectives :

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Understand the difference in focus between university presses and popular presses and between scholarly journals and popular journals.

  2. Differentiate the focus between local and national newspapers.

  3. Analyze the differing editorial stances of a number of journals of opinion.

  4. Understand that publication date can affect both viewpoint and accuracy of information, and appreciate the virtues of currency and of primary source material.

  5. Differentiate between scholarly, popular and commercial websites.

  6. Evaluate which sources, print or electronic, best fill specific information needs.

  7. Access key government information sources, local, state and national.

  8. Locate information sources within the community.

Course Requirements :

There are a total of 200 points possible in this course divided as follows:

Library Catalogs and Book Evaluation 20 Points
Scholarly and Non-Scholarly Periodicals 20
Newspaper Comparison 20
Web Evaluation 20
Web/Reference Comparison 20
Community Sources 10
Government Documents 10
Statistical Information 10
Open-book, Open -note Quiz 20
Final Project - Annotated Bibliography 50
Total Possible Points 200

Course Grading :












Cheating is a violation of the Code of Student Conduct and will NOT be tolerated. Cheating on an exam or assignment will result in receiving a zero for the entire exam or assignment and can lead to expulsion from the class or College of the Sequoias.
In class, cell phones and pagers must be turned off at all times.

The student is responsible for dropping the class if necessary. The class must be dropped immediately after the first meeting for no "w" to appear on the student record.

Course Text

Quaratiello, Arlene Rodda. The College Student's Research Companion . 4th ed. New York: Neal-Schuman Publishers, Inc., 2007. Print.

Purchasing the text is optional.

The text is also on reserve at the COS Library Circulation Desk.

Topics and Assignments:

First Session

Introduction to Course
Information Competency
Types of Libraries
Library Catalogs
Publishing Industry
Book Evaluation Guidelines
Book Evaluation Worksheet

Third Session

Article Discussion and Quiz
Introduction to the Web
Web Evaluation Guidelines
Group Web Evaluation
Web Evaluation Worksheet
Web/Reference Comparison Worksheet

Second Session

Introduction to Periodicals
Commercial Indexes - Print & Electronic
Scholarly and Non-Scholarly Periodicals
Scholarly Periodical Evaluation Worksheet
Print & Electronic Newspaper Indexes
Newspaper Evaluation Worksheet
Local Sources of Information
Tulare County Resource Directory Worksheet

Fourth Session

Government Documents and Statistical Information Evaluation Guidelines
Government Document Evaluation Worksheet
Statistical Information Evaluation Worksheet
Comprehensive Quiz
Compiling Annotated Bibliography
Final Project - Annotated Bibliography

Course Instructor :

The Instructor is on campus from 7:00 to 4:00 Monday thru Thursday. It is best to call ahead of time for a specific appointment as the instructor is active on campus-wide committees and may not always be available in the Library. E-mail communication is encouraged.


Gina Haycock
Reference Librarian

Office Telephone and Voice Mail: (559)737-6172
E-mail: ginah@cos.edu
Snail Mail:
College of the Sequoias
915 South Mooney Blvd.
Visalia, California 93277

Gina Haycock is a Reference Librarian with the College of the Sequoias and has been with the College since the fall of 1995. She graduated from UC Davis with a B.A. Degree in history and completed her Master in Library Science Degree with San Jose State University in 1989. Gina has worked in public and academic libraries since 1975.
The Library 103 Course, Evaluating Information Sources, was offered for the first time in the spring of 2001. It was developed especially to meet students' need for information competency due to the current explosion of available information. Critical thinking skills in evaluating materials have never been more necessary.


Since August 24, 2005, your are visitor: Hit Counter

Date Last Updated: 04/26/11
For questions and comments please E-mail ginah@cos.edu

Last Updated: 4/18/2012 1:57 PM