Who developed, wrote, and published the content?
What are some of the characteristics of this source?
When (and it what context) was the information created or last updated?
Where did the author get their information?
Why does this source exist?
How can you use this source to help your research?
The end of a URL can provide valuable information about the nature of a website. Here are some of the most common suffixes in the United States and what they represent. Other countries may have their own variation on these suffixes (e.g., the United Kingdom uses co.uk instead of .com)
|Domain suffix||What it stands for||Who can get one||Example|
Anyone – typically businesses, blogs, personal websites
This is the most popular top-level domain.
U.S.-based postsecondary institutions with institutional accreditation from an institutional accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (more info).
(Note: Many universities allow faculty and students to maintain their own personal websites using the university's .edu domain. Think critically before using content from a .edu website)
|.gov||Government||U.S.-based government and public sector organizations including federal, state, local, or territorial government entity; publicly controlled entity; or tribal government recognized by the federal government or a state government (more info).||
|.org||Organization||Anyone – typically nonprofit websites including charitable, artistic, scientific, personal, educational, social, cultural and religious sites||