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Annotated Bibliographies: A How to Guide: Step 3: Evaluating Sources

A resource for all things annotated bib. To be used specifically for Ms. Sepcie's and Ms. Wallerstein's

Objective

To evaluate our located sources in order to ensure that they inform out thesis, have been written or compiled by a credible source, and connect to one another

Ms. Mayo's Tutorials

Evaluating Sources

EVALUATING SOURCES GUIDE: Have more questions about evaluating sources? Want to know the difference between scholarly and popular sources? Refer to the guide above.


Evaluating Sources: The CRAAP Test

Much of the information on the internet is not regulated or vetted. Despite this fact, there are numerous useful and reliable sources online. Therefore, in order to utilize these, it is especially important for researchers to evaluate a web source before using it to support their ideas or inform their opinions. When using web sources, be sure to examine the:

  • Currencyis the date of publication of the sources time sensitive? Does it inform the content?
  • Relevancy: Is the information in the source related to my topic or thesis? Does it address my research needs?
  • Authority: Who is the person or group writing or editing the content of my source? Are they qualified to write or speak on the subject?
  • Accuracy: Is the content published true? Are other reliable sources documenting the same information? What is the original source/primary source?
  • Purpose: Why is this information being published (i.e. to inform/entertain/provoke/promote)? Is there any inherent bias apparent? Does the publisher have a history of such behavior?

Although not every single criteria may be applicable to every source, you should evaluate the degree to which the source is reliable or not.


Keeping all of this in mind, and using the CRAAP method criteria below:

  • Re-assess your sources: Do they still work? Do they connect? Are they the most direct source? Do they have a credible author? Are your sources repeating 
  • Locate new sources using the criteria and the drop-down sources references
  • Ask us! Based on your specific topic we can direct your to the right place.