Islam: General

Site Ratings

1 = Poor   2 = Fair   3 = Good   4 = Excellent

Islam for Today
This is a well-organized site geared towards explaining the theology of Islam and offers little or no discussion of Islamic politics. The site makes a distinct effort to separate these two entities, but acknowledges that a complete separation is near impossible. There are links to photo galleries, many articles by Islamic scholars and Western converts as well as denunciations of the Taliban and terrorism in general. Introductory articles, multiple perspective pieces and a limited number of original source materials are also offered here. The site provides theological research information useful to teachers and most high school students with some teacher guidance.
Overall Rating: 4

This site is not impressive in appearance but does provide a great amount of information in an accessible format using many links. It contains a report on American Muslims one year after September 11 and is actually an on-line course that is very readable for teachers and students alike. Each section allows the reader the opportunity to take an on-line quiz to check understanding, and correct answers are provided quickly. A chart comparing aspects of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism is available which is even-handed and without condemnation of any of the beliefs. In addition, a glossary of terms is provided as well as links to other informative sites. This site appears to offer information without apparent bias and would be a "good area to begin basic study of Islam."
Overall Rating: 3.5

Islam, Islamic Studies, Arabic, and Religion
This is the academic website of Dr. Alan Godlas, professor in the Department of Religion at the University of Georgia. It proclaims itself as "arguably the most comprehensive academic website on Islam." There are introductory essays on the various faces of Islam and numerous annotated links are available on the site. The vocabulary on the site, however, could be" too difficult for most high school students and probably too time-consuming for many teachers." The site is built for use by college level students and would likely only have extensive usability for the advanced high school student or dedicated teacher. There is a vast array of links available for use by teacher and student that examine many facets of Islam. The primary downfall of the site is the preponderance of links is so great that it would likely be "intimidating and overwhelming to the average visitor."
Overall Rating: 3.5

Encyclopedia of the Orient
This is the Encyclopedia of the Orient, which provides brief but very informative definitions of many Islamic terms, along with the historical background. The text is written on a "level appropriate for high school students." Topographical maps are available from the main screen with links from the map to relevant articles about the area. One very annoying feature of the site is a flashing advertisement at the top.
Overall Rating: 3

Islam Online
This site is intended for practicing Muslims and offers information roughly divided into three content areas; political news and commentary, information about Islam and services and resources for Muslims. An "attractive and well-organized site," this web page provides a gateway to a lot of up-to-date information on Islam, particularly political commentary and detailed information about the practice of Islam. Although the site claims "credibility in content--and a sharp and balanced vision of humanity and current events," there is a "clear bias" against the Bush administration's policies in the Middle East. This site is appropriate for most high school students.
Overall Rating: 3

PBS--Islam: Empire of Faith
Designed as a companion to the PBS film of the same name, this site offers "some interesting but brief information" on several main Muslim figures as well as a timeline of cultural, scientific, political and religious events in Islamic history. This site does have five lesson plans derived from the topics in the film. In addition, the site visitor may click on one of the areas of faith, culture, innovation, or profiles and be linked to "a thumbnail covering of the particular area." The site is basic in information provided but could perhaps serve as an excellent beginning for the middle school, early or basic high school learner, as well as for the searcher looking for basic, no frills answers to many of the initial questions of the learner.
Overall Rating: 2.5 and the Global Muslim eCommunity
This site offers an impressive range of information and services for the Islamic community. News articles from around the world, products for sale and information on "Islamic theology, social issues, economic concerns and political information" are available for search. Each extended article includes reader's comments. This is a fairly neutral site and offers a window into "how the Islamic community is responding to the issues of the day." Most of the site is accessible to high school students, but some of the articles will be difficult for students.
Overall Rating: 2.5

The Muslim Directory online
This site explores the connection between the science of astronomy and the Islamic faith. The site contains an abundance of links connecting the study of the "queen of sciences" to various aspects of the religion of Islam. Many of the links are fairly technical in their application and explore the role of astronomy in determining significant dates in the Islamic calendar. One of the primary links is an extensive study of Hajj and the determination of the proper dates. This site is very specific in application, but offers a fantastic amount of usable information if your interest happens to be astronomy. There are charts, studies, calculators, and other scientific tools that would sometimes only be used and comprehended by the advanced high school or college student.
Overall Rating: 2.5

Discover Islam
This site introduces the "Discover Islam Poster Exhibit" that contains 25 beautifully illustrated posters, each of which explains a particular aspect of Islam. The posters are viewable in enlarged form and the information on the posters is well presented. The posters are "colorful, detailed, and beautiful and, perhaps because of this, are slow to load on the average computer." The information provided, while good, is available from other websites and the site is really only beneficial to those wishing to order the posters on-line for display. Unless the average classroom teacher wishes to purchase these for display there would be little value in this site as there are no links available. The exhibit is available for $200, readers for $40 for a box of 100.
Overall Rating: 2