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Popular Music: Find, Evaluate, Cite Sources


AVOID PLAGIARISM. Document sources when you quote or borrow ideas, words, images, by creating footnotes and a bibliography. Below are links on using the Chicago Manual of Style. Some library catalogs and databases allow you to export citations pre-formatted in specific citation/puntuation styles. However, you will still need to proofread to insure correct CMS formatting. Ask your librarian for assistance.


Bingham, George Caleb. Puzzled Witness. ARTSTOR
  • How completely does the site explore the topic. Compare it to other sites.
  • Does it provide you with a bibliography of printed works or a list of other sites to help you expand your understanding of the topic.
  • If the material is a digitized version of a printed document, is it complete including images, graphs, tables, etc..
  • Do the sources come from a variety of journals, books, and other materials, or does the author cite the same sources repeatedly.
  • Does the author or publisher of the page have a vested interest in the topic.
  • Are the author's sources of information clearly documented and, if you are lucky, linked.
  • Are both pro and con views of controversial topics given.
  • Does the site tell you when it was first created.
  • If the material is digitized from printed copy, what edition was used. Is it the most up to date available.
  • Does the page clearly indicate when it was last updated.
  • Is the factual information given correct. Error creeps in, even in printed material with editors and proofreaders. More error creeps into the web where there are fewer control mechanisms. Check crucial facts in another resource either on the web or in print. Ask a librarian for recommended sources.
  • Easy to navigate within or among pages
  • Availability of an search function or index on a large site
  • Aesthetically pleasing graphics and color
  • Easy to read text and color
  • Thumbnail graphics and rapid download of graphics
  • It is easy to print or download information from the site.


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