While going through this guide, we are sure a few questions have come up! Some of those questions may relate to how we determined which resources to provide for you. Evaluating sources is an important part of any kind of research, but it can also be the most difficult part of research. The resources one selects will inform the quality and findings of the research. That said, assessing the credibility of resources can be challenging. Digitization has further complicated this process as the Internet now provides users with LOTS of access to both credible and non-credible resources, often pairing the two beside each other without providing any indication of which one is which. It can be very frustrating. Especially for users unfamiliar with conducting their own research or users embarking on personal research such as adoptees, the digital landscape and its many resources can be overwhelming to navigate.
This section of the guide hopes to provide you with information on how to evaluate resources and critically assess what sources would be useful to a user, like an adoptee, trying to conduct research of their own. Like many GLAM institutions (galleries, libraries, archives, and museums)—particularly academic libraries—we promote the Association of College & Research Library's (ACRL) framework for evaluating sources as it tends to cover most approaches users take in conducting research. (In fact, it's the framework we used to create this guide for you!) Below, we hope you will find the information you need to apply the ACRL framework to your own research!
The Hub, Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA)
This article provides helpful context on the issue of misinformation as well as guidance on how teenage and young adult users can develop digital literacy skills. These guidelines can be applied to any research done online.
Berkeley Library, University of California
This brief guide provides a brief checklist of considerations for evaluating sources. Additional resources like databases are also provided within the guide to help users investigate sources.
Narrated by author John Green, this video series provides helpful information for evaluating different kinds of digital sources and media for credibility and meaning. Each video in the series provides a different approach to understanding and interpreting the meaning and purposes behind digital sources. This is a useful resource for researchers at all levels trying to navigate the web.
The ACRL Framework or The Framework for Higher Education is essentially a guide developed by academic librarians and their partners in higher education for navigating information literacy. It consists of a cluster of interconnected core concepts which were developed with flexibility in mind. You can mix and match different ideas from different frames to suit your individual information needs and concerns. The Framework consists of six frames, each representative of concepts that are central to information literacy and knowledge creation. The six concepts outlined by the ACRL Framework are as follows:
Rather than provide specific rules of practice, this framework offers several guidelines for questioning sources that users can adapt and apply to their research. Developing information literacy skills and practices that encourage both learning and branching out on personal inquiries are at the heart of this framework. The flexibility of the framework paired with its focus on information literacy makes it a user-friendly guide for researchers of all ages embarking on different quests. We hope you find it a useful guide on your own quests!
Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL). (2016, January 11). Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education. http://www.ala.org/acrl/standards/ ilframework.
Image created by your friendly librarian Kelli Hayes :)
Confused about of the terms or words you have come across in this guide? Check out our glossary where we have linked you directly to the definitions for some of these confusing words! On this tab, you will find definitions for words related to digital literacy. On the Adoption Terms tab, you will find information about words related to adoption. Knowing what a word means can help you better understand what you are reading!
State of New Jersey Department of Education
The NJ Department of Education created a very comprehensive guide of digital literacy terms! We recommend you check this resource out if you are uncertain about any terminology related to digital literacy. There is even a PDF version of the guide available for free download!
Adoption Adoptee Birth Family Family Transnational Adoption Domestic Adoption Reunion Trip Identity Central Authority Hague Adoption Process Hague Adoption Convention Countries Country of Origin Residential Care Institution Adoptive Family Birth Mother Open Adoption Closed Adoption Triad Social Welfare Institutions
Find more information about the terminology used in the adoption and foster care processes. Additional adoption and adoptee resources can also be found.
Provides information on adoption and adoptee terminology, with emphasis placed on defining legal terminology.
Nancy S., Adopt Family Connections
Provides an extensive list of foster care, sponsorship, adoption, and adoptee terminology, with emphasis placed on legal terminology and adoption documents.