How to find credible sources for your college dissertation

When you are writing your college dissertation, you want to be sure your sources are credible. Now that anyone can get busy creating websites, writing blogs, and crafting articles, being able to identify credible sources for academic papers is more important than in the past. It is important to remember than anyone can write about anything they want and post it online, so you need to know where to look for papers that have been researched and vetted before being posted online.


One of the best places to look for credible sources is your college’s database system. Most colleges have databases with real articles written by real scholars, researchers, and authors. These databases usually require the use of a username and password so that only students and instructors have access to them. Colleges usually pay a large fee to be able to offer their students access to these articles. While you are searching for articles, be sure to note whether they are full articles or only abstracts. If you find an article that is not available in full, you will have to order it from your library and you might have to pay a fee for it. In some cases, your library might have the journal where the article originated, which is why the database only provided the abstract.

Google Scholar

After you have exhausted your school’s database system, Google has a free service for students like you who are working on major papers. Google Scholar is a little known service where students can find journal articles and papers that have been deemed credible. In order to search this little-known secret, you simply need to type Google Scholar into the search bar and you will be take to the site where you can search for articles on nearly any topic. Many of the results will be complete articles that are ready to use in a major paper.

Government Sites

There are a few other places to look that are almost always credible. Any website that is created by the federal government as well as state and local governments usually have credible pages. Many states have elaborate websites that are full of useful information, especially if you are researching local environmental issues or political issues. The federal government is a good place to look if you are conducting any topics that the government has an agency for, like medicine, food safety, and the economy.