The open web (in other words, stuff you find by Googling) is home to a lot of great information and a lot of misinformation. When reviewing sites, consider their Currency, Relevance, Authority, Accuracy, and Purpose/Objectivity. Click here to view a list of questions that cover each of these five areas.
- Currency: The timeliness of the information - how recent was the information collected, and if it's not very current, should you look for more current information?
- Relevance: The importance of the information for your needs. If the content isn't on target, it's not the right site for you.
- Authority: The source of the information. Is it from a university or respected medical or historical authority? Or is it a Wikipedia article that some 12-year-old with no expertise in the area whatsoever might have written? (Hint: 12-year-old's info = not so good.)
- Accuracy: The reliability, truthfulness, and correctness of the content. Check for citations, and verify that information is accurate.
- Purpose/Objectivity: The presence of bias or prejudice/the reason the information exists. Is the website host trying to sell or convince you of something? If so, avoid that site.
The CRAAP test was developed by Meriam Library, California State University, Chico