Critically Read Your Sources
Annotating is incredibly helpful, both for understanding a text and for synthesizing it for your paper.
Apply the CRAAP Test
How do you evaluate if a text is good? Try the CRAAP test!
- When was it published?
- Has it been revised or updated?
- Does your topic require current information?
- Does the information relate to your topic?
- Is the information at an appropriate level (not too elementary or too advanced)?
- Have you looked at a variety of sources before selecting this one?
- Who is the author/creator and what are their credentials?
- Is there contact information, such as a publisher or email address?
- If a Web source, what does the URL reveal (.edu, .gov, .org, .net)?
- Is the information supported by evidence and citations?
- Has the information been reviewed or refereed?
- Is the tone emotional or biased?
- Are there any spelling or grammar issues?
- Is the information intended to inform, teach, sell, entertain, or persuade?
- Do the authors/creators make their intentions clear?
- What are the biases (political, ideological, cultural, religious, institutional, or personal)?