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ENGL 1900: Library Research Tutorial

Library research tutorial for students in English 1900: Advanced Strategies of Rhetoric & Research at SLU.


Use websites to find current information, company information, government information, and expert and popular opinions. Because internet sources have no quality standards, you should evaluate all information carefully to make sure it is reliable.

Example website and web page:



USDA National Agricultural Library



Urban Agriculture

(Page on USDA National Agricultural Library website)

Use websites to:

  • find official government information.
  • find information from companies or professional organizations.
  • find information created by marginalized voices not represented in scholarly or other published materials (via twitter, blogs, etc.).
  • find very current information and breaking news.

Scholarly or Popular?

Websites are generally considered popular, but many fall into a grey area. For example, even if you are told to use only scholarly sources, you may need to refer to government websites which are official and authoritative, or to official recommendations and reports of a widely recognized professional organization such as the American Academy of Pediatrics.