Selecting reliable sources for biography research requires careful consideration. Make sure the sources support your arguments, lend authority to your writing, provide background info, offer a different viewpoint or offer essential knowledge the audience will require. Furthermore, avoid using sources which are outdated or out-of-date.
Your initial step when selecting a source should be to assess its relevance to your topic. Make sure the source you select is accurate, reasonable, dependable and objective – this will save time and energy while providing you with the information that you require.
Biographical research should always include extensive interviews with your subject. Biography interviews can typically be conducted face-to-face or over the telephone, but they can also be recorded through video and audio formats. They offer an invaluable opportunity to get a true sense of the personality and style of each person you interview.
You can also consult a reliable reference book or database to locate biographical details. These sources usually offer access to primary sources like newspapers, diaries, and letters as well as secondary materials that provide context for those primary sources.
Another important factor when evaluating whether a source is reliable is its author. If they are well-known in their field, then there may be more likelihood that they have written an authoritative article.
In addition to checking an author’s credentials, it is wise to consider their motivation when providing information. You should be able to tell if a source is trying to sell something or promote an agenda. Moreover, ensure the language used is free from emotion-stirring words and prejudice.
Be mindful that sources can alter their contents at any time, so it’s important to check when a website was last updated. A regularly updated website tends to be more reliable than one which hasn’t been updated in years.
Finally, be sure to confirm author bias or conflicts of interest before using a source. Unbiased sources will have an adverse effect on your research.
A reliable source should be clearly labeled as such, including its purpose and who the publisher is. Furthermore, the source should include an accurate citation.
If the source is a website, you can check its current status by looking at its homepage. Furthermore, take note of its underlying content and links to other sites in order to guarantee accuracy.
Additionally, you should search for evidence to support any statements in the source. This is especially helpful if the source is online where physical verification of its accuracy cannot be guaranteed.
As a general guideline, reliable sources should not be older than ten years. However, you should still proceed with caution since some sources can be out-of-date or even unreliable. Be especially wary when reading news websites as their reports may be based on inaccurate records from years past or even lack any recent events at all.