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Moriarty Library will be open May 11 - September 2, Monday - Friday from 10am-6pm. Closed weekends and holidays.

As always, our web resources are available 24/7. Questions? Our Chat and Ask Us! services are available Monday-Friday, 10am-6pm.

Holistic & Alternative Medicine

Evaluating Websites

You be the Judge!

Criteria for judging Web sites for academic use:

1. Author's credentials & affiliation

  • Who is the author? What expertise does he or she have on this topic? Who sponsors the site? Check the domain name to see if it is a university, business, organization, or an individual. Check for an "About Us" or "Contact Us" link.

2. Purpose of the site (educational or commercial?)

  • What is the stated purpose of the site? Check the "About..." link if there is one.  Is the site intended to inform, educate, or entertain? Would you quote information from this site in a college research paper?

3. Bias (sponsorship, language, or images)

  •  What position or opinion is presented and does it seem biased? What kind of sites does this one link to?

4. Currency (kept up-to-date)

  • On what date was the page created? Is there a copyright or last updated date? Do you need more current information? Do links on the site still connect to their destination?

5.  Accuracy

  •  Does the information presented seem accurate? Are the facts verifiable in another source?

6. References to sources of information

  • Does the website provide citations for the information?  Is there a bibliography available?

For more, see the Lesley Searchpath tutorial, Module 5.


Magazines, newspapers, and journals are called "periodicals" because they are issued on a regular or "periodic" basis.

For Academic purposes, periodicals can be separated into three major groups:

popular magazines and newspapers,
professional publications, and
scholarly journals.

If you are able to recognize the differences among these sources, you will be able to identify the best information for your research need.

It's What's Inside that Counts!

Your body has 5 pounds of living stuff in it that is not you—microbes of all shapes and sizes: bacteria, viruses, and fungi (more than 10,000 species)! The human body can be visualized as an entire ecosystem, a microcosmos. We are hardly one entity at all, but a community of organisms working together toward their mutual survival. In fact, most of the microorganisms on our skin and in our guts are good for us—we couldn’t survive without them. Here’s more: You May Not Know About One of the Most Important Organs in Your Body

Lesley Partners with Google Scholar

On-campus users at Lesley University will see additional links in Google Scholar search results which facilitate access to Lesley's resources.

Off-campus users will need to configure your affiliation:

  • To set your preferences, click on Scholar Preferences (
  • Type "Lesley" in the 'Library Links' section and select "
  • Click Save preferences.
Google Scholar Search

Selecting Articles

Just like in Google, searching in the databases can produce hundreds (and sometimes thousands) of results! 

When you type in your keywords and find articles, be selective.

Here are a few things to notice:

  • What is the date of the article?
  • What is the title of the journal?  Is this an academic journal or a magazine or newspaper article?
  • Does the article have references?

In addition, by reading the abstract, you can see how relevant the article is to your topic.