When you are researching something important online, you shouldn’t just look at the first few sites which you find. The internet is a vast resource, and it is all at your fingertips. Here are a few tips to help you make sure that any online research you do is valid.

Check Everything

It is undoubtedly so easy to find what you need to know online, but you must remember that not everything you read on the internet is true. So, you should always double-check anything which you are not sure of. Even some things that you are certain about should be checked, especially if you are doing research for academic purposes or a book.

Academic Databases

If you are writing a required paper for school, then an excellent place to start for the resources which you need is an academic database. They should be able to link you to the material that you need and are very easy to access and use.

Consider the Merits of Wikipedia

If you need to cite resource material, then Wikipedia is not the best means for you, but it can be an excellent place to start. Generally, most of the fundamental information on the site will be fine to work with. However, you will need to verify that it is correct, and often, the links at the bottom of each page will lead you on to academic and journalistic resources, which will help you even further.

Expect the Unexpected

Sometimes when you are researching history online, you may find something which you do not expect. Take family history as an example; how many people have discovered that they have siblings they didn’t know about or an ancestor who was leading a double life?

Play with Keywords

When you use a search engine, don’t just carry out a search using one term. For example, you might get different results from searching ‘Wars of the Roses’ than you would from ‘Richard III’, even though Richard III was a significant part of the Wars of the Roses. So, you shouldn’t just research the event; search the people and places involved, and you should soon find that you are opening up a whole new range of resources which will help you to finish your project.

Stay Organised

With so much out there which might be useful to you, you have to stay organised. You don’t want to do the same searches over and over again. Create a list of the links that are the most useful to you and keep it separate from the rest of your research. Alternatively, consider one of the apps that allows you to ‘snip’ articles and save them for later, such as OneNote.