Syllabus points
d) evaluate the validity of first-hand and secondary information and data in relation to the area of investigation
e) assess the reliability of first-hand and secondary information and data by considering information from various sources
f) assess the accuracy of scientific information presented in mass media by comparison with similar information presented in scientific journals

To assess the accuracy/reliability of information, you may need THREE steps in your answer:
1) Describe all the possible methods you could have used to find information, including your textbooks, Internet, encyclopaedias, and science journals (I suggest at least three).
2) For each method, make judgements on the advantages and disadvantages. Textbook (or encyclopaedias): Easily access and understood, but too general, lack of operational detail and out of date; Internet: wide range, up to date, but variation in quality; Science journals: high academic rigor, and detail, but often too difficult to fully understand, limited access.
3) For a specific research, make a judgement that if your information was reliable (from highly regarded sources, author’s qualification, credential and currency; relatively consistent between different sources)

The following is from BOS
(An article published in Curriculum Support, Science, 2001 Vol. 6 No. 3)

Where data is collected, quantified or evaluated, reliability refers to the consistency of the information; validity refers to whether the measurements you are taking are caused by the phenomena you are interested in. The relationship between reliability and validity can be confusing because measurements can be reliable without being valid. However, they cannot be valid unless they are reliable.
When students have to assess the reliability and validity of information and data from secondary sources, the best procedure is to make comparisons between data and claims of a number of reputable sources, including:
  * other...