This is the published version of: Zilinski, L.D. & Sapp Nelson, M. (2014). Thinking Critically About Data Consumption: Creating the Data Credibility Checklist. First published in the Proceedings of the American Society for Information Science and Technology and is available online at:


As STEM areas increasingly rely on pre-existing data, either to validate or extend the scientific body of knowledge, students who have baseline knowledge of how to find, evaluate, and access data will have an advantage. Accordingly, undergraduate STEM curricula is increasingly focused on research-based group projects that develop professional skills, building the professional portfolio needed for early career scientists, technologists, and engineers. This project works to develop new tools to implement basic data skills within the undergraduate disciplinary curricula. The first step in this process was to identify the competencies that are likely to be needed by those seeking data for reuse. Using competencies identified in the literature and via brainstorming, formatted similarly to the traditional model used by librarians to teach assessment of publication quality, a data credibility checklist was developed as the first tool in an emerging toolkit.


data information literacy, STEM education

Date of this Version