Who are the authors or contributors, and what are their credentials?
Explore the other tabs in this box for more detailed CRAAP criteria for articles.
Date of Publication:
Some topics, such as those in the health sciences, require current information. Other subjects, such as history, value older material as well as current. Articles will usually list a month and year of publication.
Articles are usually published more quickly than books, so the content could be very recent.
Know the time needs of your topic and examine the timeliness of the article; is it: up-to-date, out-of-date, or timeless?
Usefulness: Is the information on the site useful to your current assignment? Does it:
Coverage: Does the page cover the topic comprehensively, partially or is it an overview? Is there a chapter that focuses on your topic area?
Audience: Who is the intended audience of the webpage? Is the level appropriate for your needs?
Author: Is the author an expert in this field? Where is the author employed? What else has he/she written? Has he/she won awards or honors? If the author/researcher is employed at a university, you can usually look up a list of their publications on that university's website.
Type of Periodical: For college-level assignments, information should be obtained mostly from scholarly journals, although other types may be useful, depending on your topic.
Organization and Content: Is the article well organized and focused? Is the argument or presentation understandable? Is it original research, a review of previous research, or a broad informative piece?
Illustrations: Are charts, graphs, maps, photographs, etc. used to illustrate concepts? Are they relevant & reliable? Are they clear and professional-looking?
References / Bibliography: Scholarly works always contain a bibliography of the resources that were consulted. The references in this list should be in sufficient quantity and be appropriate for the content. Look for:
What is the primary reason that was the article was written?
"Scholarly research that is published in open access is digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions (although it does require that proper attribution of works be given to authors)"
CARL: Canadian Association of Research Librarires