Module 5 - How reliable and qualitative is the information found?

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2.2 How to handle contrasting information?

Let's assume you are looking for Sir Isaac Newton's date of birth on Google. When having a good look at the results, you will notice that several websites show different dates. Some sites mention 1642 as year of birth, while others mention 1643.

What would you do in this situation? Which of the two encountered years of birth is correct?  Find a reliable site that mentions both dates and explains which date is correct.

By studying different websites you could attempt to clarify contrasting information. 

  • Do not wildly copy data from websites, but also consult additional sites and sources such as (paper) encyclopedia and text books, among others. 
  • Keep in mind your objective for searching the information. When looking for Isaac Newton's main theories, his exact year of birth is not important. It is, however, when covering his biography. 
  • Contrasting information is not always entirely preventable. Scientists also contrast each other sometimes.
  • Based on your own analysis and insights you will have to determine which information to accept and which to refuse.