A printable version of our SCARAB Rubric, along with useful definitions and tips.
Why won't my teacher let me use Wikipedia? What's wrong with blogs? What is peer-reviewed? What constitutes a scholarly journal? These are some questions you might have as you begin to delve into your college research assigments.
There is such a plethora of information available at our fingertips these days. This makes finding information both easier in some ways, but also overwhelming in other ways. Now, more than ever, we need to be able to determine the quality of the information we are using. The quantity is definitely there, but the quality can sometimes be missing. It helps to have some concrete criteria to use to evaluate sources of information. It also helps to understand a little bit about how information is created and that not all information is created equal.
SCARAB is a source evaluation rubric created by the MCC librarians to help students evaluate sources of information. Each letter in SCARAB represents one of the criteria to use in evaluating information.
The Free Web is made up of web pages you can find using Google and other Free web search engines. Some assignments do not allow free web resources. Good material may be found here, but also a lot of information that may be inappropriate for academic writing. Evaluate carefully!
The Fee Web (also known as the Hidden, Invisible, or Deep Web) includes subscription databases. You'll usually find better information here--including those scholarly and peer-reviewed articles often required--since most database content went through a more rigorous publication process. See also our "Databases by Subject" guide.