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HIST 150: Unlearning US History (Fall 2023)

Evaluating Websites

Websites can be excellent resources.

Be sure, however, to evaluate the website for bias.

There was a time when a .edu .org or .gov URL was a sign of quality, though that isn't always the case; for example, I one purchased, despite not being an organization (nor especially organized, truth be told).


  • who made the website
  • does the website have citations
  • why was the website made
  • how often is it maintained
  • does it point to more reliable sources you can use?

Finding the creator can be difficult

Consider a website like Institute for Humane Studies, which calls itself "institute for Humane Studies at George Mason University."

It is a .org, has a fancy website, and is "at George Mason University."

If you look at the about page, it gives you the board of directors, many of whom are academics.

What isn't on the website, and can only be found by looking at the 990 tax form (via our database Foundation Directory), is that it is funded by the Koch Brothers, and has a specific political agenda.