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Evaluating Web Sites. A Webquest for grades 9-12 Created by Denise McCall. Introduction.

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Evaluating web sites

Evaluating Web Sites

A Webquest

for grades 9-12

Created by Denise McCall


Before the Internet, you did your research at your local library. The card catalogs made researching tedious and time consuming. The Internet is full of so much information, but how do you know what is truth and what is not? It’s your turn to be the detectives, lets see what you can find.

Do you ever wonder:

Who puts information up on the web?

How can I decide if this information is any good, anyway?

Can I find something that might be better than this?

This Webquest is designed to help you answer these questions and a few others. When you finish this quest, you will be more able to look critically at web sites.


  • Your job is to develop a strategy you could use to "read" websites. Not just read the words!

  • You will be the detectives and be able to look for the who, what, when, and why behind any website, and then make a choice about how valuable the site is for you.

  • You will be able to discuss with you class and your teacher what you've found.

  • You will be able to present your findings to your classmates.


  • Your first step is to team up with a partner.

  • Once you are in your group, you must view the eight ways of checking information on web sites.

  • Each member of your group should print out a list of all the checkpoints and the important things to remember about each one on a single page.

    The Quality Information Checklist


Next , download and print the

Website Evaluation Sheet located on my website

and answer all the questions as a team,

then decide if the following websites are reliable or not.

Beware of what you find…

  • RYT Hospital

  • The Why Files

  • Martin Luther King Information

  • Smithsonian


  • Thanks to the Webquest Page , for ideas and training material.

  • Betsy Farquhar should be credited for the essential idea.

  • Her Webquest was of invaluable help.

  • Thanks!

  • Farquhar, B. (2004, January 2004). Retrieved June 27,2008,

  • from University at Albany,State University of New York:

  • http://albany.edu/~ef8043/webquest.htm


Now you’re done, What did you think?

Were you able to find anything suspicious about either site? Remember, you may form an immediate opinion of the site’s reliability but you have to be able to PROVE it is reliable with the methods you have learned.

Did you, as partners, discover different things about the web site concerning it’s reliability?

Work together with your partner to create a quick presentation to the class about your findings. Be prepared to show us why the site was either reliable or not.