Apply to all types of information in any format - print or online.
Since anyone can publish on the web, which leaves a huge range of quality in web information resources, you must be doubly careful when evaluating websites for research.
Wikipedia, for example, is not a scholarly resource, because:
Websites like "Answers.com," etc., are usually considered inappropriate sources to use for college level work.
To determine if a particular site should be used in your research, consider the information on this page.
How to Evaluate Sources
Don't Fall into a T.R.A.A.P.
How do you make sense of available information and know what to trust? You'll find many types of resources as you research, such as: books, articles, newspapers, and websites. It is crucial that you evaluate all resources for relevance and credibility. Use the T.R.A.A.P. criteria to evaluate the credibility of all sources. The following list is not static or complete. Criteria will be more or less important depending on your situation and the resource.
Timeliness: The timeliness of the information.
| Relevance: The importance of the information for your needs.
|Authority: The source of the information.
|Accuracy: The reliability, truthfulness, and correctness of the information.
|Purpose: The reason the information exists.
|Key: * indicates criteria is for Web sources only
This is a modified version of a document created by Sarah Blakeslee at Meriam Library, CSU Chico.
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