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Research Map: Evaluating Resources

Not all resources are created equal! What fits your needs the best?

Using the Research Map: Evaluating Resources

Is a resource credible?

Use the CRAAP test or the TEAM test to find out.

Pro Tip

Even if an article or chapter doesn't cover ALL the points you are trying to make, it may have supporting evidence for ONE point.

Evaluating Resources

Remember your information sources need to work together as a TEAM to support your research statement or answer your research question. The letters in TEAM also stand for aspects to consider as you evaluate whether to include an information source.

Timeliness - Was the source written within the timeframe you need? (Look for copyright, review, or publication date.)

Expertise - Does the author have the type of expertise required - expert/scholar, journalist, personal experience? (Look for information about the author at the beginning or end of the article or book. You may need to Google them.)

Accuracy - Is the information consistent with other sources? Where did the author get the information - Original research or from experts in the field as opposed to unsupported opinion?  (Look for citations and/or mentions of sources within the text.)

Matter - Is the information related to your topic? Does it fit the requirements for your assignment? (Look at the words in the title and subject headings. Read the abstract or summary if there is one. Consult your assignment for requirements.)

The CRAAP Test is a list of questions (developed at Meriam Library at California State University, Chico) to help you analyze the validity of a source.  Here is a short list of things to look for to see if your information source passes the CRAAP test:

CRAAP Test image (Click image for html version)




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