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CAS 110 - Public Speaking (Carter)

This guide provides resources to help support the CAS 110 course and assignments.

Can I Use Web Sites for Research?

For this particular class and this particular assignment the goal of the session is to point you to Zondervan Library tools and resources. So we won't be using Google today. But the CARS evaluation criteria is a good way to assess whether or not to use any source: books, journals, magazines or web sites. 

CARS Evaluating Sources: Types, Credibility, Synthesis


Using Zondervan Library tools and resources. Why? The content is reliable and the statistics are solid.

Here is an easy way to remember what to look for when evaluating the information that you find. These questions will help you assess what you might find most useful.    CARS: Credibility, Accuracy, Reasonableness, Support

Credibility. Is this source trustworthy? What are the author’s credentials? Is he or she known or a respected authority on this topic?  Is there evidence of quality control?   Goal: an authoritative source, a source that supplies some good evidence that allows you to trust it.

Accuracy. Is the informatio up to date, factual, detailed, exact, comprehensive? What is the intended audience and purpose? Does it reflect intentions of completeness and accuracy. Goal: a source that is correct today (not yesterday), a source that gives the whole truth.

Reasonableness.  Is the presentation fair, balanced, objective, reasoned? Can you find that the author has no conflict of interest? Is there an absence of fallacies or slanted tone. Goal: a source that engages the subject thoughtfully and reasonably, concerned with the truth.

Support:  Does this information provide background sources or references? Is there contact information for the author? Are claims supported, documentated and corroborated?. Goal: a source that provides convincing evidence for the claims made, a source you can triangulate (that is are you able to find at least two other sources (non web) that support it). 

taken from Virtual Salt. Robert Harris




Statistical Sources: outside links

Statistical sources provide specific data points that add interest and support to your topic.There are some excellent statistical sources both print and web. Here are some suggestions:

  • Statista (found on the links to articles page)
  • Statistical Abstracts of the United States: REF 317 Un 4  Note: individual tables are also accessible through Google but sometimes are tricky to identify and may not be the most current information.)
  • Pew Research Center:
  • Gallup Research Polls--Public Opinion: REF 301.1543  Note: Lexis/Nexis Database also has access to Gallup Poll News Service. You can search specifically by that title.
  • Web sites of reputable national or international organizations will often provide statistical data. For example: World Health Organization: 

 Using Library tools and resources you are assured of reliable content and solidly researched statistics.