Career Key

Author: Career Key's President and CEO, Juliet Wehr Jones, GCDF, J.D.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Are students evaluating the quality of Internet sources of information?

They should be. (And so should the rest of us).

Critical thinking is one of ten "Essential 'Habits of Mind'" college faculty identify as essential learning behaviors for coursework success. According to a recently released study of American Freshman by the Higher Education Research Institute at the University of California - Los Angeles, less than 50% of students frequently evaluate the quality or reliability of information received from the Internet.

Only 33.8% of students who frequently use the internet for research/homework or to read blogs and 44.3% of those who frequently use the web to read the news say that they frequently evaluate the reliability of information they receive.

These statistics make me wonder what the percentages are for adults. Probably not too different.

This study reminds us of how important it is for career guidance professionals to evaluate the validity of career tests on the internet before recommending them to others. If you would like to see a checklist for doing such an evaluation, see Dr. Jones's recent article "Testing the Test," published in the American School Counselor's Association (ASCA) School Counselor magazine. It is available for download in our Press Room.

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