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Evaluating the Credibility of Sources

Evaluation Basics

Determining Credibility

When you select research Resources to use in your class project, you must make sure that they are credible for your purpose; you can Evaluate the credibility of the Resource using one of several popular techniques. These Evaluation techniques use acronyms that represent facets of the character of the resource to be evaluated, such as:

Relevancy; Accuracy or Verifiability; Authority; Date, Timeliness, or Currency; Purpose or Rationale; Objectivity, Point-of-View, or Bias; and Coverage or Scope. 

Methods of Evaluating Credibility:


  • Does something about that Resource smell... off? Maybe it doesn't pass the CRAAP test!
  • Currency, Relevance, Accuracy, Authority, Purpose
  • CRAAP handout
  • Bonus material!


  • A tool to help you navigate the ocean of online information
  • Relevance, Authority, Date, Appearance, Relevance 
  • RADAR handout


  • Standard for journalists to determine if their sources are VIAble
  • Verifiable, Independent, Accountable
  • VIA handout

SIFT (a more intensive method)

  • Helps you SIFT through online information; this method guides you through a much deeper dive through evaluation and gives you the tools to locate and evaluate the original source of the information!
  • Stop, Investigate the source, Find better coverage, Trace information back to its original context

Where to find Credible Resources

The best place to look for credible resources is at your Gateway Library! Explore our collections of:

And you should always feel free to contact our librarians with any questions about credibility, evaluation, and information literacy!