About Web Resource Ratings

There is a lot of health information or "Web Resources" freely available on the internet. A Web Resource is any item you find online that you can watch, read, listen to, or interact with, such as videos, fact sheets and online quizzes. Many resources are consumer-friendly, but it's often difficult to know which ones have credible information, based on scientific research. Web Resource Ratings do the homework for you, assessing the quality of health information available online and presenting our assessment using a 5-star rating scale.

There are three stages of Web Resource Rating:

  1. Assessing inclusion of websites
    Websites we include must be:
    • Not directly funded by a company trying to sell you a product or service
    • Relevant to optimal aging
    • Intended for citizens, or include content intended for citizens
    • Free access
  2. Assessing inclusion of Web Resources from included websites
    Web Resources we review must be:
    • Not directly funded by a company trying to sell you a product or service
    • Relevant to optimal aging
    • Intended for citizens
    • Less than 5 years of age

  3. Assessing quality of included Web Resources
    Web Resources are rated for quality with three criteria:
    • Evidence-based: Is this information reliable, based on scientific research?
    • Transparency: Is it clear who developed the resource and how?
    • Usability: Is the information easy to understand and easy to use?

Each Web Resource Rating also provides a summary of the content, including any information that you can act on related to optimal aging.

If you cannot find a website or Web Resource Rating that you are looking for, check out our list of excluded websites. If you still can’t find it, let us know; we may be rating it now!

Recent Web Resource Ratings

  • Telefono Anziani Maltrattati: an Italian helpline for victims of elder abuse

    Aging Equal
    The Telefono Anziani Maltratti is a helpline service dedicated to receiving reports and managing abuses against older people. The Telefono Anziani Maltrattati builds relationships between volunteers, older people and institutions in order to support older people who are being abused. Read this resource to learn more.
  • Preventing elder abuse: educational resources from collaborative projects

    Aging Equal
    Ageism could be a root cause for elder abuse. Some projects have been developed, which seek to prevent elder abuse by raising awareness of human rights among older people. This empowers seniors to challenge ageist attidues. Read this resource to learn more about otehr projects educating seniors and professionals about elder abuse prevention.
  • Why is age a barrier to intergenerational friendships?

    Aging Equal
    People are more likely to be friends with others who are similar to them. Stereotypes about younger and older people can prevent intergenerational friendships from forming. Read this resource to learn more.
  • The World Health Organisation global campaign to combat ageism

    Aging Equal
    Ageism affects how older people can enjoy the opportunities brought about by aging. Ageism is often undetected. Changing the way we think fell and act towards age and ageing is possible through collective global action. Read this resource to learn more about the actions taken by the WHO in creating change.
  • Older Belgians with care needs go vote – by themselves!

    Aging Equal
    Older people with care needs should be able to vote for themselves. In Belgium, an initiative was created to increase the accessibility of voting to seniors in various care settings. This allows seniors to remain active and to participate in society. Read this resource to learn more.
  • Fact file: Misconceptions on ageing and health

    WHO Ageing
    There is a lot of diversity among older people. Older adults may require different levels of care, and are able to participate in different activities depending on multiple factors. Policy should be framed to improve the lives of all older people, regardless of their abilities. Read this resource to learn more misconceptions on ageing.

Understanding our star rating system

Each Web Resource is rated using a star system on a scale from 0-5. The more stars, the higher the quality with 5 being the maximum. These ratings are weighted to favour content that is informed by scientific research evidence, followed by transparency in its creation and ease of use. When you search for Web Resource Ratings on a particular topic, the ones with the highest ratings are presented first.

Our raters

Staff working on the McMaster Optimal Aging Portal conduct the assessments of the resources. Two staff members independently rate each resource and come to an agreement on its rating. Any disagreements in ratings are discussed until consensus is reached.

DISCLAIMER: Web Resource Ratings are provided for informational purposes only and to facilitate discussions with your healthcare providers, family members, or informal care givers. They are not a substitute for advice from your own health care professionals. The Portal is not responsible for the content of external websites, nor is it an endorsement of that website or the site’s owners (or their products/services). The Web Resource Ratings may be reproduced for not-for-profit educational purposes only. Any other uses must be approved by the McMaster Optimal Aging Portal (Send email to Portal).

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