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Deakin Library CRAAP Guidelines

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Checklist for evaluating information sources
Why is it important to evaluate internet resources?
Anyone can 'publish' information on the internet.
Unlike print resources and journal databases, web resources rarely have editors or academic reviewers.
No standards exist to ensure accuracy on the web.
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What are the CRAAP guidelines?
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The CRAAP guidelines are a list of questions to help you evaluate the information you find.
C
R
A
A
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Currency
Authority
Relevance
Accuracy
Purpose
Currency
When was the information published or posted?
How current is the information?
Do you need current information, older sources or both?
When was the resource last updated?
If there are references and links, how current are they?
The old or the new?
Newspapers – very up-to-date, but not necessarily established information.
Journal articles – can be relatively current, and contain reliable information.
Books – typically contain older but more established information.
Relevance
Does it relate to my topic and needs?
Who is the intended audience?
Does it help me answer a question or solve a problem?
Will it lead to other information?
Does it provide evidence for or support my ideas?
What does it add to my work?
Which one is the most relevant to the impact of climate change on wheat production?
A government report from 2009 about mitigating the future impact of climate on wheat
An edited book about crop adaption to climate change.
A journal article about the analysis and management of wheat breeding strategies to adapt to climate change
Authority
Who is the source of the information?
Who is the author, publisher, source or sponsor of the information?
Are the authors' and/or publishers' affiliations clear?
What is their reason for publishing the material?
For websites, does the domain of the URL tell you anything about the author or source (.gov, .edu, .com, .org)?
Limit your results
wheat and climate change site:.gov.au
You can limit results in Google to a particular domain using the 'site:' function
Accuracy
Is the information true and accurate?
Where does the information come from?
Is the information supported by evidence?
Can that evidence be verified if necessary?
Are there spelling, grammar or other errors?
Has the information been reviewed or refereed?
Q: Typically, do students seek other sources to validate information?
A: Only occasionally
Metzger, MJ 2007, ‘Making sense of credibility on the web’. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology vol. 58, no.13, pp. 2078-91.
Purpose
Why does the information exist?
What is the purpose of the information?
Is the information factual or opinion?
Is the information biased?
Is the information to inform, teach, sell, entertain or persuade?
Is the website sponsored or influenced by advertising revenue?
Scrutinise paid-for and sponsored content
Need some more help?
Contact a Liaison Librarian http://www.deakin.edu.au/library/about/contact-your-librarian