Evaluating Information – Applying the “Craap” Test

When you search for information, you’re going to find lots of it . . . but is it good information? You will have to determine that for yourself, and the CRAAP Test can help. The CRAAP Test is a list of questions to help you evaluate the information you find. Different criteria will be more or less important depending on your situation or need. Evaluation Criteria

Currency:

The timeliness of the information.

• When was the information published or posted?
• Has the information been revised or updated?
• Does your topic require current information, or will older sources work as well? Are the links functional?

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 citing this source in your research paper?

Authority:

The source of the information.

• Who is the author/publisher/source/sponsor?
• What are the author’s credentials or organizational affiliations?
• Is the author qualified to write on the topic?
• Is there contact information, such as a publisher or email address? Does the URL reveal anything about the author or source? examples: .com .edu .gov .org .net

 Accuracy:

The reliability, truthfulness and correctness of the content.

• Where does the information come from?
• Is the information supported by evidence?
• Has the information been reviewed or refereed?
Can you verify any of the information in another source or from personal knowledge?
• Does the language or tone seem unbiased and free of emotion?
• Are there spelling, grammar or typographical errors?

Purpose:

The reason the information exists.

• What is the purpose of the information? Is it to inform, teach, sell, entertain or persuade?
• Do the authors/sponsors make their intentions or purpose clear?
• Is the information fact, opinion or propaganda?
• Does the point of view appear objective and impartial?
• Are there political, ideological, cultural, religious, institutional or personal biases?

Watch is short video about the test

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