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Processing and evaluation: Evaluation

Part of the Information Literacy Portal

Process evaluation

This is the moment in which you define if you can end your search for information as you are satisfied with the result, or, conclude you have to do your search again using different search terms, or by broadening/narrowing your search.
The result may be satisfactory but this does not mean it is relevant or answers your question.
Relevant as it may be it is highly possible you missed other relevant information.

Assessing your search strategy and search result, you may ask yourself:

Is there non-relevant information among my search results and if so, why?

  • Not enough terms used with best-match search
  • Not enough elements combined with a Boolean search
  • Two words in one text does not mean there is a correlation between the two
  • Use of words with more meanings
  • Search engine searches unwanted word variants
  • Deliberately skipped a too difficult interpretable search word.

Did I miss relevant information? If so, why?

  • Not used the correct source. (book, article..)
  • Combined too many elements in the search
  • Typing errors or grammatical faults
  • Searching with quotations marks too limiting
  • Many possible spelling variations
  • Search words too generic, not the right jargon
  • Element too hard to specify

Product evaluation

Are you satisfied with the final result?

Did some elements turn out to be less satisfactory and if so, what should you have done to achieve a better result?

  • Show the final result in a manner fitting to your research. This could be a written assignment, but also an advice, newspaper article of another product.
  • Keep in mind the rules for quoting and paraphrasing,  referencing and the bibliography.
  • Sometimes you have to present your research results orally. Ask yourself which presentation form best suits your research and audience. Is a PowerPoint presentation, Prezi or a Poster presentation useful?

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