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Hamersly Library

HE 362W -- Finding Current Event Articles: Evaluating Sources

About Evaluating Sources

For any source, you will need to evaluate it to determine whether or not it is reliable and relevant to your assignment. You can use the C.R.A.P. test--a mnemonic device--to help decide whether or not it's worth including in your resource list. 

Evaluating Sources

C = Currency

R = Reliability, Relevance

A = Authority, Audience

P = Purpose, Point of View

 

Each of the letters represents a key point for you to evaluate. Here are some more in-depth questions to ask about each source:

 

Currency

  • How recent is the information?
  • How recently has the resource been published and/or updated?
  • Is it current enough for your topic?

Reliability

  • What kind of information is included in the resource?
  • Is content of the resource primarily opinion? Is it balanced?
  • Does the creator provide references or sources for data or quotations?

Authority

  • Who is the creator or author?
  • What are the credentials?
  • Who is the publisher or sponsor?
  • Are they reputable?
  • What is the publisher’s interest (if any) in this information?
  • Are there advertisements on the website?

Purpose/Point of View

  • Is this fact or opinion?
  • the creator/author trying to sell you something?
  • Is it biased?