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Research: Evaluate Your Sources: Evaluating Websites

What is Peer Review, How to evaluate websites

Video: Evaluating Websites Tutorial

Video: The CRAAP Test

Video: Evaluating Info, Knowing What to Trust

The CRAAP Test

An easy way to evaluate each website you visit is to use the CRAAP test.

Currency: the timeliness of the information

  • Does the site include the dates it was created and updated?
  • How current are the links? Have any expired or moved?
  • Consider if currency is especially important for the research topic.

Relevance: the importance of the information for your needs

  • Does the information relate to your topic or answer your question?
  • Who is the intended audience?
  • Is the information at an appropriate level (i.e. not too elementary or advanced for your needs)?
  • Have you looked at a variety of sources before determining this is one you will use?
  • Would you be comfortable using this source for a research paper?

Authority: the source of the information

  • Is there an author? What are his or her qualifications?
  • What is the sponsoring organization? Is it reputable?
  • Is the domain appropriate for the search (.edu, .com, .gov, .org, .net, etc.)?
  • Look for links providing information about the author and his or her e-mail address.
  • Check for "about us," "philosophy," etc. for information about the organization.

Accuracy: the reliability, truthfulness, and correctness of the content.

  • Is the information reliable and correct?
  • Is there an editor who verifies the information?
  • Remember, anyone can publish anything on the web, and there are no web standards for accuracy.

Purpose: the reason the information exists

  • Does the website show a minimum of bias?
  • Is there advertising on the page?
  • Is the site objective or designed with a specific purpose in mind? Is the purpose of the site to sell, to inform, to persuade?

When reviewing websites, also think about coverage.   Consider:

  • Does the site contribute something unique to the Subject?
  • How does the site compare with other sites on this topic?
  • Is material covered in depth rather than superficially?
  • Is there a balance of text and images?
  • Is the site readily viewable, not needing special software or requiring a fee?

Tips for Evaluating Social Media Sources

Social media can provide instant news and information faster than traditional news outlets or sources. You can find a great deal of useful and reputable information on social media, however there is also an ever increasing need to verify and determine accuracy of this information.


Video: Evaluating Social Media

Coulter Library, Onondaga Community College, Syracuse, NY